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Jan. 28, 2014

Port Authority Receives $400,000 Grant from Duke Energy to Revitalize Cincinnati Neighborhoods

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Duke Energy, the largest electric power holding company in the United States, recently awarded a $400,000 grant to the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority to help redevelop the Bond Hill, Roselawn and Queensgate areas. The money will be used to create development-ready sites that will ultimately bring new investment from industrial and logistics companies, breathing new life into the Cincinnati neighborhoods.

On Jan. 14, Laura Brunner, president & CEO of the Port Authority, received the check from Jim Henning, president of Duke Energy Ohio & Kentucky. The ceremony was located in Cincinnati’s Roselawn neighborhood, at TechSolve II, a Port Authority site currently undergoing redevelopment.

The Port Authority purchased the 13-acre site last year, after receiving funding from the city. It started the redevelopment by demolishing most of the vacant and blighted structures located on the different parcels that make up the site. Recently, the Port Authority received approval to expand TechSolve Business Park to the site, creating TechSolve II.

“Returning sites to productive use is essential to revitalizing Greater Cincinnati’s communities and building a stronger regional economy,” Jim Henning said in a statement for the press. Mayor John Cranley also thinks improving neighborhoods is an important strategy to attract new businesses and residents to the area. He said the city of Cincinnati ”is committed” to the TechSolve project, adding that ”we will be successful here.”

Another, larger site is also undergoing redevelopment near the TechSolve II park. The Port Authority recently finished the demolition of a 350,000-square-foot shopping center there. The entire project is expected to cost around $80 million and calls for a high-impact, urban-style commercial development of the 25-acre site.

In Queensgate, the Port Authority plans to develop a large industrial park through the modernization of real estate and transportation assets. Once an important manufacturing center, the area fell onto hard times in the 20th century. Now, it is plagued by contaminated sites, aged buildings and inefficient transportation. The Port Authority said the area’s re-industrialization will require multiple stages of evaluation and execution.

“We are pleased that Duke Energy recognizes the redevelopment potential in Bond Hill, Roselawn and Queensgate. This investment will go a long way to unlocking that potential, creating jobs and bringing new energy to our neighborhoods,” said Jeff McElravy, interim director for the city of Cincinnati’s Department of Trade and Development. “Now, with the help of Duke Energy and other community partners, we will begin to see a future of new productivity and value,” Brunner added.

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