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TriHealth, Select Medical Plan to Open New Rehabilitation Hospital in Evanston

1 Apr 2014, 4:13 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

TriHealth, one of the largest health systems in the region, is looking to expand and open a new hospital in the Cincinnati area. Last week, TriHealth and Select Medical, one of the largest providers of acute care in the country, announced plans to form a partnership and build and operate a new inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Evanston.

The new TriHealth Rehabilitation Hospital will serve Cincinnati’s growing need for inpatient rehabilitation. It will have 60 beds and will provide care for people suffering from spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, stroke, amputation, neurological disorders and musculoskeletal and orthopedic conditions. In a press release, TriHealth said that Select Medical’s renowned Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation will also provide support for new clinical program development, specialized services, enhanced access to research and clinical education.

Work on the project is expected to start later this year. The hospital is scheduled to open by late 2015. It will be located in Evanston’s Keystone Parke office campus, at I-71 and Dana Avenue. Keystone Parke is also home to the American Red Cross Cincinnati Area Chapter.

TriHealth currently provides acute rehab services in a 16-bed unit at its Bethesda North Hospital and a 30-bed unit at its Good Samaritan Hospital. Both units will be managed by Select Medical until the TriHealth Rehabilitation Hospital is finished. They will then be transferred to the Evanston facility. Select Medical will serve as managing partner of the new location, which will employ 180 people.

“This higher level of specialty care benefits our rehabilitation patients by allowing us to combine our existing units and expertise at a single, larger location specifically designed to meet their rehabilitation needs,” said John Prout, president & CEO at TriHealth, in a statement for the press. “Select Medical is a national leader in providing acute rehabilitation services and we felt it important to make these services available to meet the needs of our community.”

“The partnership builds on the patient-focused rehabilitation care already offered at TriHealth,” said David Chernow, president & CEO of Select Medical. “We think very highly of TriHealth’s reputation for clinical excellence and dedication to providing a great patient experience, and truly look forward to building a lasting relationship together.” TriHealth and Select Medical have been working together since 1997.

Photo of Bethesda North Hospital credit: TriHealth

CBRE Cincinnati’s Mike McMillan to Represent Proposed Technology Park in Oxford

25 Mar 2014, 1:43 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

A proposed 74-acre technology park next to Miami University could transform Oxford into Ohio’s Silicon Valley. Or, as Ryan Howard, a character on the popular TV show “The Office,” called it, a “Silicon Prairie.” And it is ready to move forward, now that Mike McMillan of CBRE Cincinnati’s Data Center Solutions Group has been selected to represent the build-to-suit project, find tenants and help get it off the ground.

Todd Dockum, a 1988 Miami University alumnus, is the project’s creator. He first announced it in 2007. According to plans, the proposed Miami Heritage Technology Park will be constructed at the intersection of Oxford Trenton Road and Oxford Milford Road. The multimillion-dollar project is expected to include a variety of buildings, including research-and-development facilities, data centers, offices and labs. The proposed tech park is designed to be “green,” with all the buildings LEED certified.

The project has already secured a $3.5 million “Job Ready Site” grant from the state of Ohio. The money will be available to start construction once a tenant signs a $3 million commitment to construct the first building. It will be spent on infrastructure and utilities.

“The goal for the Miami Heritage Technology Park is to help bring innovation to the Oxford market,” McMillan said in a statement for the press. “Uniting business leadership and university quality will accelerate business growth and retain quality skilled labor in the community.”

The 74-acre park is expected to provide an important economic boost to the city of Oxford, attracting businesses and creating jobs. Businesses will also benefit from the location’s skilled labor market. Citing 2010 Census data, CBRE said that 51 percent of the 23,000 people who live in Oxford have college degrees.

Photo credits: CBRE

Eagle Realty Group Hires Cassidy Turley to Lease Queen City Square in Cincinnati

18 Mar 2014, 3:34 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Located in the heart of Cincinnati’s Central Business District, Queen City Square is the city’s premier business center, its newest and most prominent downtown development. It was constructed by Eagle Realty Group, a member of Western & Southern Financial Group, and now its owners have hired Cassidy Turley to find tenants for the remaining space in the $400 million complex.

Queen City Square offers 1 million square feet of Class A-plus office space. It consists of the the 41-story Great American Tower and the 17-story 303 Broadway. The complex is surrounded by important Cincinnati landmarks and offers numerous amenities such as parking, shops or restaurants.

The Great American Tower at Queen City Square is a trophy office building that towers over any other structure in the Cincinnati metro area. Not only is it downtown’s largest building, it is also the first ”green” office tower in the region, with a LEED Gold certification. It was constructed between 2008 and 2011, at a cost of $322 million. The state-of-the-art tower offers 800,000 square feet of space. It currently serves as the headquarters of Great American Insurance. 303 Broadway at Queen City Square was completed in 2006. It has nearly 200,000 square feet of space.

Queen City Square’s tenant roster also includes Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease, Frost Brown Todd, Key Bank or Analytic Partners. According to a Cassidy Turley press release, the complex still has about 80,000 square feet of available space. Cassidy Turley Senior Vice President Scott Abernethy and Vice President Digger Daley will lead leasing efforts.

“We are extremely excited to be listing this signature asset,” Mr. Abernethy said in a statement for the press. “Queen City Square is unmatched in the region. The architecture, location and amenities immediately make a positive statement for any tenant in this facility.”

Photo credits: www.queencitysquare.com

UGN to Build $50M Plant in Monroe, Create 150 Jobs

10 Mar 2014, 8:47 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

UGN Inc., a manufacturer and supplier of auto parts, last week announced plans to build a $50 million facility in Monroe, Ohio. Groundbreaking is scheduled to start next month, depending on the final approval of state and local incentives.

Last September, when UGN announced it had narrowed down the list to two potential locations, Ohio and Indiana, the cost of the project was set at $25 million. Since then, UGN has decided to double its investment and to choose Ohio as the home of its new facility.

“JobsOhio’s aggressive approach and Gov. John Kasich’s personal involvement were major deciding factors,” Peter Anthony, CEO of UGN, said in a statement for the press. “They do a nice job of helping business leaders explore the possibility of working in the state.”

Plans call for the construction of a 206,400-square-foot auto parts manufacturing plant. UGN also said there is room to expand by at least an additional 150,000 square feet. When finished, it will create 150 permanent jobs and generate more than $7 million annually in wages and benefits. Positions in the new plant will be added in phases.

UGN will manufacture new carpet and underfloor technologies at the Monroe plant. The company said that these products are being made in the United States for the first time ever. Beginning in 2015, they will be installed in Japanese-produced automobiles. In the past two years, UGN has increased its sales by more than 50 percent. The company has 1,500 employees at six facilities in the United States and one in Mexico.

“This new plant further strengthens our position as a world-class manufacturer,” Anthony declared. “We look forward to being a part of the community in Monroe.”

Gov. Kasich issued a statement last week following UGN’s announcement. “This is just great news for the people of Monroe and reinforces the important role that Ohio continues to play in the auto industry. It’s great that the company found the team at JobsOhio to be helpful to them and, more important, great news for the 150 families who will be receiving new jobs at UGN,” he said.

Photo of UGN’s facility in Somerset, Ky. Credit: UGN Inc.

Octal Leases 130,000 SF of Industrial Space in West Chester, Opens First Plant in North America

3 Mar 2014, 10:07 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

OCTAL, a world leader in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) resin and integrated PET sheet manufacturing, is expanding its operations with the opening of its first plant in North America. The Muscat, Oman-based company recently signed a lease for 130,720 square feet of space in the Greater Cincinnati area.

The new plant is located just 20 miles north of Cincinnati, at 5399 E. Provident Drive in West Chester. The office and warehouse property is part of Duke Realty’s World Park industrial development. Other tenants in the park include Totes Isotoner and TradeGlobal.

Cushman & Wakefield Inc. worked together with Cincinnati Commercial Realtors, a  C&W Alliance firm, to represent OCTAL. The team that brokered the deal included Cushman & Wakefield’s Mark Collins and Dean Collins, as well as Josh Young and Si Pitstick of Cincinnati Commercial Realtors.

“This was a six- to eight-month process of performing the proper studies and analyzing which markets made the most sense for OCTAL to place its first North American plant,” Mark Collins said. “We worked very closely with our alliance firm partners at Cincinnati Commercial Realtors to find the right mix of location, incentives and opportunity for OCTAL. This was a collaboration at every phase of the process, and that’s important when you’re dealing with an important, international client who is new to the market.”

OCTAL was formed in 2006, but it managed to quickly become the world’s largest PET sheet producer and the largest PET resin producer in the Middle East. At its facility in West Chester, the company will focus on converting post-industrial PET flake and resin into reusable rPET Sheet. The Cincinnati Business Courier reported that between 25 and 50 people will be employed at the new plant.

“We performed an in-depth site analysis to determine the optimal location for OCTAL’s long-term growth plan,” Mark Collins said. “They are a successful company that will bring jobs and investment into the area.”

Photo credits: OCTAL

URS Capital Partners Sells Two Cincinnati-Area Apartments

25 Feb 2014, 2:22 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

URS Capital Partners, a real estate investment company based in Huntington, N.Y., completed the sale of two multifamily properties in the Cincinnati area at the end of January. The two properties are the Westshore Apartments, in Covington, and the Incline Apartments in Cincinnati’s Incline District.

The Westshore Apartments, formerly known as Harbour House, is a Class B apartment building with 37 units. URS Capital Partners acquired the property in October 2011.

“Due to the property’s positive attributes, including its amazing views and proximity to downtown Cincinnati, we saw the opportunity to buy the property well, implement a strategic upgrade plan and rebrand the property to greatly improve cash flow and value,” said Christopher and Lisa Urso, partners of URS Capital Partners, in a statement for the press.

URS said the upgrade was a success and that it was able to increase average rents by 10 to 15 percent throughout the property. Although it did not disclose the price of the transaction, URS said the asset was sold to a local investor at a 7.5 percent cap rate. At the time of the sale, the apartment building was 95 percent occupied. The Westshore Apartments generated an unleveraged 21 percent internal rate of return with a two-year hold period.

The Incline Apartments is a 40-unit Class C apartment complex. URS Capital Partners purchased the property out of foreclosure in November 2011. At that time, it was 80 percent vacant. URS Capital Partners renovated the Incline Apartments. The property, also sold for an undisclosed price, generated an unleveraged 16 percent IRR.

“As a result of the timely execution of our strategic plan, we allowed our investors to enjoy healthy unlevered cash-on-cash returns during uncertain economic times,” said Christopher Urso.

URS Capital Partners plans to acquire additional multifamily properties in 2014. The company will focus primarily on Class B and C assets. According to Marcus & Millichap, small private buyers are searching for these types of assets and they’re bringing new capital to the market, increasing the investment activity in the Cincinnati metro area. At the end of 2013, cap rates for Class B and C properties started in the low-8 and low-9 percent range, respectively.

Photo credits: URS Capital Partners

Procter & Gamble Selling Sycamore Building Downtown

18 Feb 2014, 4:54 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Another high-rise building in Cincinnati’s CBD is on the market. Last week, I wrote about the Garfield Tower, an apartment building listed for sale by CBRE Group Inc. Now, Procter & Gamble is selling its office property at 299 E. Sixth St.

The Sycamore Building, as it is known, was constructed in 1915. It is a 10.5-story building, standing 142 feet tall. The property offers approximately 110,000 square feet of rentable space. Its location in the heart of the CBD places the Sycamore Building close to many hotels, restaurants, parking facilities and other important amenities.

According to PropertyShark.com, Procter & Gamble acquired the building in 2007 for $6.8 million. The total market value of the property is now $8 million, with the building valued at $6.3 million. The Sycamore Building is being marketed for sale by David Ottenjohn and Rusty Myers, executive vice presidents at Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. The sale price is set at $6.5 million, or about $59 per rentable square foot.

Right now, the property is occupied by Procter & Gamble, as well as Cintrifuse and the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the tenants will vacate the building in late November. Procter & Gamble spokesman Bryan McCleary told the Enquirer that the multinational consumer goods company plans to move about 200 people from the building to its two larger sites in downtown Cincinnati. The Sycamore Building will be available for occupancy starting this December.

CBRE reports that office building sales in the Cincinnati area picked up at the end of 2013 as investor interest increased. Out-of-state investors see Cincinnati as an attractive and stable place to allocate their investments.

The area’s overall vacancy rate decreased in fourth quarter 2013, from 22.6 to 22.3 percent, with the CBD remaining flat at 20.1 percent. Meanwhile, office rents increased from $19.64 to $19.73 per square foot. In the CBD, rents increased from $20.74 to $20.98 per square foot.

Photo credits: http://www.sycamorebuilding299.com
Charts courtesy of CBRE.

Garfield Tower in CBD Goes Up for Sale

11 Feb 2014, 2:26 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

A Cincinnati apartment tower located in the heart of the city’s Central Business District is now for sale. CBRE has listed the property but did not disclose a sales price.

Cincinnati’s Garfield Tower is located on a 0.37-acre site at 111 Garfield Place, within walking distance of Great American Ballpark, Paul Brown Stadium and the headquarters of some important companies, including Procter & Gamble and The Kroger Co. It was constructed in 1969 and consists of a 16-story high-rise residential tower and an attached two-story commercial building, the home of the Cincinnati Shakespeare Co. The commercial building is included in the sale.

Garfield Tower has about 102,600 square feet of residential space and about 25,000 square feet of commercial space. It offers 160 studio and one-bedroom apartments and includes such amenities as a fitness center, indoor heated rooftop pool and laundry facilities. The units have an average size of 651 square feet. They were converted to individual electric heating and cooling Island Aire systems between 2011 and 2013. According to the Garfield Tower website, rents in the building range between $780 and $920 per month.

Propertyshark.com lists the owner of Garfield Tower as Garfield Associates LLC. The property was last sold on June 19, 2003, for $5.7 million, according to the site. It sets the current market value of the tower at $3.7 million.

Marcus & Millichap said in its 2014 annual report for the Cincinnati area that urban development is reviving the local economy, boosting employment and creating new apartment demand. The commercial real estate brokerage firm expects the pool of buyers targeting apartment assets in the area to expand this year, as capital remains plentiful. It also said that larger properties of 150-plus units will remain most sought after, generating multiple bids from well-capitalized buyers.

Photo credits: CBRE
Charts courtesy of Marcus & Millichap

$500M Middletown Energy Center to Be Top Gas Power Plant

4 Feb 2014, 6:36 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The city of Middletown, in Butler County, will be home to one of the most efficient natural gas-fired power plants in the United States. St. Augustine, Fla.-based NTE Energy announced last week its plans to develop, own and operate the power plant, which is expected to provide numerous benefits to the city, county and state economies. The massive project represents an investment of more than 500 million.

The plant will be called the Middletown Energy Center. It will use a Mitsubishi Power Systems Americas (MPSA) M501JAC advanced combustion turbine in combined cycle configuration and will generate approximately 500 MW of low-cost electric power, enough to supply 400,000 homes. According to NTE Solutions, the plant will be fueled by clean-burning natural gas, allowing for greater operating efficiencies and as much as 60 percent less emissions than conventional fuel.

NTE Solutions has begun permit applications and hopes to start work on the project in 2015. The Middletown Energy Center is expected to become fully operational in 2018. During the three-year construction period, the project will create 300 to 400 construction jobs, most of them to be filled by the members of skilled trade unions.  Once finished, the Middletown Energy Center will employ  25 to 30 full-time workers. Most of them are expected to come from the local workforce.

“As the energy landscape continues to change, the need for affordable, cleaner base load generation is upon us,” said Seth Shortlidge, president of NTE Energy, in a statement for the press. “NTE Energy looks forward to working with the Middletown community in developing one of the cleanest, most efficient and most reliable sources to fulfill this growing demand.”

Photo credits: www.middletownenergycenter.com

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

28 Jan 2014, 5:11 am

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.

Demand for Greater Cincinnati Industrial Space Strongest Since 2005

21 Jan 2014, 3:53 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

2013 was an excellent year for the Cincinnati industrial market. As companies snatched up more and more space, rents increased and vacancies dropped, reaching pre-recession levels.

In the third quarter, the overall industrial vacancy rate in the Greater Cincinnati area dropped below 7 percent for the first time since 2007. And the market continued to perform very well in the final quarter of the year, as well. Cassidy Turley reports that more than 615,000 square feet of space was absorbed in the fourth quarter, making it the 10th consecutive quarter of positive net absorption.

“Demand for industrial space across Greater Cincinnati was impressive throughout 2013,” said Jarrett Hicks, senior research analyst for Cassidy Turley’s Cincinnati office, in a statement for the press. “Overall net absorption totaled nearly 5.2 million square feet for 2013, signifying the highest level of demand since 2005.”

The overall vacancy rate in the region finished the year at 6.35 percent, compared to 6.55 percent in the third quarter, due primarily to Class B bulk warehouse and freestanding leases in the Northwest submarket. Overall bulk vacancy dropped to 7.1 percent in the fourth quarter, from 7.7 percent in the third quarter. Northern Kentucky continues to have a historically low bulk vacancy rate, currently standing below 2 percent. Freestanding space is also in short supply, with a 5.4 percent vacancy at the end of the year. The office/warehouse market experienced negative absorption in the fourth quarter, but three of Greater Cincinnati’s four submarkets showed slight positive absorption. The overall average asking rent stands at $3.63 per square foot.

According to Cassidy Turley, only three projects totaling 215,000 square feet were delivered in Greater Cincinnati in the fourth quarter, with almost 2.2 million square feet of space still under construction. The high demand for space will lead to a further decline in vacancy, which could then result in an increase in industrial construction in the region in 2014.

Charts courtesy of Cassidy Turley.

Cincinnati Seeks Brownfield Fund Grant for Brewery X Redevelopment Project

13 Jan 2014, 2:58 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Cincinnati Beer Week is less than a month away. It’s scheduled to start on Feb. 6, but real beer fans will be able to get into the spirit of the event even sooner. On Jan. 27, a public meeting will be held at The Brew House to discuss the city of Cincinnati’s application for a grant from the  Brownfield Fund for the Brewery X Redevelopment Project. The project’s goal is to turn a dilapidated historic building close to downtown Cincinnati into a brewery with a tap room and an outdoor beer garden. The application is available for review at the Walnut Hills Branch of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County.

The historic building is located at 1430 Martin Drive, in the 180-acre Eden Park, one of the most popular parks in Cincinnati. It was constructed between 1889 and 1894 and served as a pump station, moving water from the East Reservoir to downtown’s growing suburbs. It was renovated and in 1939 reopened as the new home for the city’s Central Fire Alarm System and the Cincinnati Police. The Pump Station continued to operate as the Central Dispatch for the Cincinnati Police and Fire Departments until 1988 and as a backup for 911 until late 2004. It was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on March 3, 1980.

The city of Cincinnati has owned the building since it was constructed and will continue to own it during the the implementation of the Clean Ohio grant. Brewery X L.L.C. has signed a long-term lease for the property. The company will invest approximately $4 million in the project and plans to buy the building in the future.

Although dilapidated, the building is still structurally sound. The redevelopment calls for the  complete gutting of the interior and replacement of the roof and windows, as well as the removal of asbestos and lead paint. The developers requested $736,520 from the Clean Ohio Assistance Fund to perform asbestos abatement and $490,380 from the Brownfield Revolving Loan Fund to perform the lead paint abatement. Work is expected to start as soon as the funding is approved.

Brewery X is expected to open in mid-2015. It will create at least 13 full-time jobs. The average hourly wage will be $12.94 within the first three years of operation.

Photo credits: The City of Cincinnati

Christ Hospital Opens P1 Garage as Part of $265M Campus Expansion Project

6 Jan 2014, 5:26 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Christ Hospital opened its new visitor garage on Dec. 24. The new P1 garage is part of a larger, $265 million campus expansion project. It will be the primary parking location for patients and visitors to the hospital.

The P1 garage is located along Auburn Avenue. It is connected to both the Medical Office Building and the main hospital entrance through a skywalk over Mason Street, and can be accessed from Mason Street and Huntington Place. The facility has eight levels with 847 parking spaces for patients, families and visitors. There are separate entrances for visitors and physicians.

P1 was designed to fit with the historic character of Mount Auburn and the other buildings on The Christ Hospital campus. The facility is clad in brick, precast concrete and glass. One million pounds of Rebar and over 363,000 feet of post-tensioning steel were used to reinforce the concrete. In a news release, Christ Hospital said the basin in which P1 sits is big enough to hold three of Coney Island’s Sunlite Pools. At 200 feet wide and 401 feet long, holding more than three million gallons of water, Coney Island’s Sunlite Pool is the largest flat-surfaced, recirculating pool in the world.

Christ Hospital started work on the garage in May 2012 as part of its campus expansion, a huge project that includes the construction of The Christ Hospital Joint and Spine Center, a facility described by the hospital as “regionally unique,” dedicated solely to orthopaedic and spine care. In October,  Christ Hospital held a topping off ceremony to celebrate the completion of the building’s structural steelwork. The new facility is expected to open in summer 2015. It will feature  60 private inpatient rooms, 12 operating rooms, physical and occupational therapy, pain management, imaging services, conference and educational facilities, and physician offices.

Photo credits: Christ Hospital

Investor Duo Buys Former SuperValu Warehouse in Xenia

30 Dec 2013, 6:29 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Developers Stuart Lichter of Industrial Real Estate Group and Chris Semarjian of Industrial Commerce Ltd. have teamed up to acquire, develop and manage commercial and industrial real estate throughout the United States. The pair are well known for their ability to purchase large-scale facilities and repurpose them for new tenants. This month, they have acquired the former SuperValu Warehouse in Xenia.

The 522,000-square-foot facility is located on 74.4 acres of land at 1003 Bellbrook Ave. It includes 300,000 square feet of dry storage space, 100,000 square feet of refrigerated space and 80,000 square feet of freezer space.  The acquisition was made by Xenia Bellbrook L.L.C. According to Greene County Property Records, the warehouse was sold on Dec. 3 for $4.3 million.

Semarijan and Lichter believe they can breathe new life into the property, attract tenants, and bring new jobs and economic growth to the area. “We are very pleased with the acquisition of this building and the offerings that come along with it,” Semarjian said in a statement for the press.  “We have already begun the marketing efforts that show much promise for several tenants to naturally occupy this facility.”

“We are excited about the chance to once again work in southwestern Ohio and continuing to execute our core business plan of repurposing corporate amenities,” Lichter added.  “We will continue to work with community leaders in the city of Xenia as we find qualified tenants who, in turn, will provide jobs and further economic promise.”

The duo has more than 40 million square feet of industrial and commercial real estate in the state of Ohio, including several high-profile projects in the Miami Valley totaling well over 7 million square feet. Among them are the acquisition and redevelopment of the General Motors Moraine Assembly Plant, Ford Motor Batavia Car Plant, Emery Air Freight/UPS Center at the Dayton International Airport, Cooper Tire and Delphi Automotive Campus.

Photo credits: Google Maps.

Cincinnati’s Garfield Suites Hotel Changes Hands

23 Dec 2013, 4:15 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

CBRE Hotels announced the sale of Cincinnati’s Garfield Suites Hotel. Cincinnati Lodging Associates–a joint venture of Sun Development, Hotel Capital and Silver Rock–is the property’s new owner. It plans to convert the all-suite hotel into a DoubleTree Suites.

The Garfield Suites Hotel is located at 2 Garfield Place, in the heart of Downtown Cincinnati, near some of the best restaurants and nightlife. The 16-story hotel offers 153 suites, as well as 20,000 square feet of leasable space, including a 7,053-square-foot restaurant on the ground level and a two-floor fitness center. Amenities include full kitchens, living rooms with 42-inch plasma TVs and Wi-Fi, free shuttle service and attached covered parking.

The Garfield Suites Hotel is the closest hotel to one of Cincinnati’s newest attractions, the $400 million Horseshoe Casino, which opened this March. Other nearby attractions include the Cincinnati Reds, U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati Museum Center, Cincinnati Children’s Museum, Aronoff Theater and Duke Energy Convention Center.

Garfield House L.P. was the upscale hotel’s previous owner. It retained CBRE Hotels as the exclusive advisor and was represented by Eric Belfrage, first vice president of CBRE Hotels in Columbus, and Peter Greene, first vice president of CBRE Hotels in Chicago. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“Downtown Cincinnati is a dynamic live-work-play environment, and the Garfield Suites Hotel was a fabulous opportunity,” Bharat Patel, CEO of Sun Cos., said in a statement for the press. ”We recognized the mixed-use opportunity of an all-suite hotel with penthouse suites, office and ground-floor retail space. The location is also tremendously dynamic between Kroger and Macy’s headquarters. The gentrification of the ‘Over the Rhine’ neighborhood and the new casino add to the unique environment.”

Photo credits: CBRE Hotels

INX International Breaks Ground on 62,000 SF Plant in Lebanon

16 Dec 2013, 9:24 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

INX International Ink Co., a division of Japanese company Sakata INX, announced at the end of November its plans to build a 62,000-square-foot facility in Lebanon, Ohio. The company broke ground on the project on Dec. 5, with both company officials and local dignitaries attending the ceremony.

The new building will be located in the 752-acre Lebanon Commerce Center business park, about 30 miles northeast of Cincinnati. INX International Ink spent two years analyzing potential locations for the new facility and ultimately chose the site in Lebanon because it offers easy access to Interstate 71 and provides the company with an opportunity for future expansion.

“INX is currently producing 37 million pounds of solvent ink for packaging, and we project production to be at 42 million pounds in the next couple of years. Our capacity for this product line will increase to 77 million pounds. We will transfer our current workforce in Blue Ash and add jobs in Lebanon, so we will have 33 employees when the new building opens. We anticipate adding more employees in stages over the next five years, and if demand continues to rise, we have the capability to expand our plant up to 90,000 square feet in the future,” John Hrdlick, COO of INX International Ink Co., said in a statement for the press.

The new facility will be constructed on 11 acres of land. It will serve as a manufacturing center primarily for solvent ink packaging products. INX will also produce three-piece metal decorating, as well as UV/EB and some water-based flexographic ink products at the site. Besides the greater manufacturing space, the new building will include a full-service lab for color management and development, Quality Control and testing purposes, and accommodations for employee training and customer meetings.

Owner and developer The Schueler Group of Cos. expects to complete the new facility in the fourth quarter of 2014. Corporate partner Bunnell Hill Construction Co. will be the project’s general contractor. The Dayton Daily News reported that the project is expected to cost $18 million.

Photo credits: INX International Ink Co.

Radisson Opens the Radisson Cincinnati North CoCo Key Water Resort

10 Dec 2013, 9:49 am

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

The Radisson Cincinnati North CoCo Key Water Resort opened last month. The full-service hotel boasts a  50,000 square foot indoor water park and is scheduled to undergo a comprehensive renovation project in the second quarter of 2014. It will remain open during the renovation.

Radisson is one of the world’s best-recognized hotel brands. It announced the signing of the Radisson Cincinnati North CoCo Key Water Resort in mid-October. The new addition is part of Radisson’s plans to expand in key suburban markets and is expected to help develop and strengthen the Radisson brand.

The Radisson Cincinnati North CoCo Key Water Resort is located just minutes from downtown Cincinnati, close to important attractions such as the Sharonville Convention Center, EnterTRAINment Junction, Cincinnati Museum Center, Kings Island, Cincinnati Zoo, Paul Brown Stadium and the Great American Ball Park. It offers 257 rooms, from family-friendly suites to Business Class Rooms. Amenities include high-speed wireless internet access, an indoor and outdoor seasonal pool, a 24-hour fitness center and a 24-hour business center.

The hotel also offers 15,000 square feet fof event and meeting space, including two ballrooms complete with audiovisual equipment and Wi-Fi. It can accommodate meetings for up to 300 people. The hotel’s featured restaurant is the Tradewinds Restaurant and Lounge.

The CoCo Key Water Resort is Cincinnati’s only indoor water park and it is connected to the hotel. It features 40-foot body and raft water slides, an interactive play island and zero-entry area with slides for younger children, an adventure river tube ride, giant whirlpools, an activity pool, private party rooms, family-friendly restaurants, and a video arcade.

“We look forward to welcoming both leisure and business guests to the hotel,” said Albert Bashir, general manager of the Radisson Hotel Cincinnati North CoCo Key Resort, in a statement for the press. “We are committed to providing our guests with an exceptional guest experience.”

Photo credits: Radisson

$33.5M Water Street Project Expected to Start Construction in December

2 Dec 2013, 4:19 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

Water Street,  one of the largest development projects in downtown Dayton in years, is getting ready to break ground. Last week, the Dayton City Commission approved an agreement with the project’s developer, Water Street Redevelopment L.L.C., a joint venture of Dublin-based Crawford Hoying Development and Dayton-based Woodard Real Estate Resources.

Water Street is a residential, commercial and retail mixed-use project located in Dayton’s Water Street District. At a cost of $33.5 million, the project will be constructed on nine acres of city-owned land along the Great Miami River downtown, between Patterson Boulevard and Webster Street. It will feature at least 150 luxury rental apartment units with views of the river, city and stadium; 50,000 square feet of Class A office and commercial space; a three-level parking garage with as many as 480 spaces; and public infrastructure improvements.

The office building and residential complex will cost $26 million, and will be developed with private equity and financing obtained by the developer. The garage will cost $5 million. It will be owned by the city of Dayton for the first 17 years, after which the developer has the option to buy it. Another $2.5 million will be invested in public infrastructure improvements such as utilities, roadway improvements, lighting and landscaping.

“We’re very excited to move this mixed-use project forward,” Shelley Dickstein, Assistant City Manager for Strategic Development, said in a statement for the press. “Water Street features the type of upscale housing and office choices that people are looking for. It will further strengthen the vitality of the area, which is within easy reach of many other downtown amenities, like the river, Fifth Third Field, Five Rivers MetroParks and Tech Town.” Jason Woodard, principal at Woodard Real Estate Resources, added that “we believe the riverfront location, coupled with the high demand for downtown housing, will make Water Street a popular destination for today’s professionals looking for that live, work and play experience downtown.”

The Water Street project is expected to help revitalize downtown Dayton. The developers hope to start construction of the office building in December. Construction on the garage and residential complex is scheduled to start in April 2014.

Photo credits: Crawford Hoying Development 

Downtown Cincinnati’s dunnhumby Centre Reaches Key Milestone in Construction

26 Nov 2013, 2:32 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

On Jan. 31, dunnhumbyUSA and the Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. (3CDC) broke ground on the dunnhumby Centre project in downtown Cincinnati. After almost 10 months of work, the project reached an important milestone in its construction, as it received its first concrete pour at street level on Nov. 14. Also, at the start of the month, the Cincinnati Urban Design Review Board approved the design for the new building.

The development is located at the corner of Fifth and Race streets. When finished, in February 2015, the project will deliver 280,000 square feet of office space, 30,000 square feet of street-level retail space and an above- and below-ground parking garage with 1,000 spaces. The garage will open to the public before dunnhumbyUSA moves into the new office.

According to the 3CDC website, the dunnhumby Centre is expected to cost about $129 million. It will be financed with the help of New Market Tax Credits, tax increment financing, 3CDC-managed corporate loan funds, a JobsOhio loan, conventional debt and equity through PNC Bank, Fifth Third Bank, First Financial Bank, the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority and private capital.

In a press release, the 3CDC said that 100,000 cubic yards of dirt have been excavated from the site to prepare for the below-grade parking decks. Concrete work started in June and is now 40 percent complete. From here on, construction will be done from the ground up and will be visible to passersby.

The project will turn a long-vacant lot in the heart of the city’s downtown into dunhumbyUSA’s new headquarters. The company employs 650 people in Cincinnati and plans to grow to 1,100  by 2018. It will own the new building. The 3CDC will operate the parking facility and will own, lease and manage the retail space. The Turner Construction Co. is the project’s construction manager, with Chicago-based Gensler Architects as the project designer.

Not only will the project spur further development and lead to the revitalization of downtown Cincinnati, it will also bring 280,000 square feet of office space to a market where vacancy is dropping. Marcus & Millichap expects office vacancy in the Cincinnati metro area to decline to 18.2 percent by the end of the year. Developers will complete 120,000 square feet of office space during 2013, five times less than in 2012.

Photo credits: 3CDC
Charts courtesy of Marcus & Millichap

Cincinnati-Area College Developments Receive Funding, Expected to Boost Local Economy

18 Nov 2013, 10:00 pm

By Adrian Maties, Associate Editor

This July, Xavier University, together with Messer Construction Co. and Ackermann Group, broke ground on a long-delayed apartment and retail development at Montgomery Road and Cleneay Avenue, adjacent to the university’s campus. With a $53 million first phase, the University Square project recently received some help from the Finance Fund. It was awarded $8 million in federal New Markets Tax Credits.

The project was initially announced in 2007, and at the time was named Xavier Square. It was shelved in 2008 due to the financial crisis, but Xavier revived it this year, with a new development team and a new name. University Station will be located on a 20-acre site in Cincinnati and Norwood.

Phase I calls for the construction of 176 housing units for students, 39,000 square feet of retail, 46,000 square feet of office and more than 1,000 parking spaces on a 15-acre site. Some of the housing units will be affordable units for qualifying neighborhood residents. Phase I is expected to be completed by August 2014. It will create 350 full-time jobs and 200 construction jobs in an area that, according to the Finance Fund, has a poverty rate of 32.8 percent and an unemployment rate approaching 10 percent.

“We are pleased to provide $8 million in New Markets Tax Credit financing for such an impactful project,” said Finance Fund President & CEO James Klein in a statement for the press. “University Station is a cornerstone of economic development for this area and will support further expansion and job creation by attracting additional private investment.”

To the south, in nearby Covington, another college is also working on a development project expected to boost the local economy, and it has also received financial aid in recent weeks. The Gateway Community and Technical College has received a $100,000 grant from the Jacob G. Schmidlapp Trusts for its Urban/Metro Campus project.

Gateway has now raised more than $2.6 million of the $5 million initial amount set by the Gateway Foundation to support the Urban/Metro Campus development and scholarships. The college has also invested $350,000 in the campus master plan and $10 million for the development of Phase I.

At a cost of more than $81 million, the project calls for the renovation of seven buildings and the construction of a new facility over the next three to six years. When finished, it will help make college education more accessible to Northern Kentucky residents. Phase I has already started, with the renovation of the former Marx Furniture store into the Gateway Design and Technology Center.

“This campus is crucial to the economic development of the region by creating a ready workforce, helping families out of poverty through higher-wage jobs and boosting the economy with new business development around the campus area,” said Heidi Jark, managing director of the Foundation Office at Fifth Third Bank, in a statement for the press.

Photo credits: Finance Fund

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