CINCINNATI — Over-the-Rhine, a neighborhood that was considered to be more dangerous than Compton, Los Angeles, in 2009, has been transformed into an iconic part of our city, boasting unique eateries, craft breweries and revived architecture.
A recent story published by the online magazine Politico explores how OTR has shifted from shootings, riots and boarded storefronts to the focal point of the city.
Cincinnati Center City Development Corp., also known as 3CDC , has invested more than $500 million in the neighborhood. The funds went toward buying and rehabilitating 131 historic buildings, constructing 48 new buildings, maintaining subsidized housing and cleaning up parks.
Criminals have been driven out of the community with the addition of cameras and better lighting. The closing of liquor stores and the development of vacant lots have also contributed to the decline in crime.
“You could take a crime map and lay it over the neighborhood and see that many of the calls for service were taking place in front of these carry-out stores,” 3CDC’s vice president for communications Anastasia Mileham told Politico.
Crime dropped by 36 percent from 2004 to 2008 as they pushed out the corner stores, which has allowed the area to flourish under new development.
Greg Hardman, owner of Christian Moerlein Brewing Co ., leads a group focusing on making the “Brewery District” of OTR supportive of the neighborhood’s economy.
The new streetcar, tentatively scheduled to open Sept. 9 , will connect OTR to downtown and the riverfront. The addition is expected draw traffic and elevate the neighborhood's economy.