City tries to buy building in OTR for streetcar maintenance

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Cincinnati city council passed a motion on Monday allowing the administration to move forward in trying to buy up property to use as a maintenance and operations facility for the Cincinnati streetcar system.

The area in question is at 1910 Race Street just north of Findlay Market in Over-The-Rhine. The city is in negotiations with the property owner after the California company who owns the vacant building rejected a $1.4 million dollar offer - more than three times its assessed value according to the Hamilton County Auditor's web site.

City officials say the maintenance facility could lead to redevelopment in the area and are prepared to begin eminent domain proceedings if they can't come to terms with the owners. "Eminent domain is way, way, way down the road and there is no real belief that it's ever going to come to that," said Cincinnati city councilmen, Wendell Young. "We're not utilizing eminent domain. We're not even saying eminent domain. So there's no reason for anybody's radar to go up. We are simply talking negotiation," said Young.

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