U.S. Bank contributes millions to OTR neighborhood - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

U.S. Bank donates $2.4 million to Mercer Commons project

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OVER THE RHINE, OH (FOX19) -

After years of being a neighborhood filled with crime, Over-the-Rhine (OTR) is becoming the new 'it' place to live with the help of $2.4 million from U.S. Bank.

U.S. Bank is partnering with 3CDC to help finance the development of 10,600 square feet of mixed-use commercial space in the three-phase Mercer Commons project.

"U.S. Bank has been a critical partner in both the second and third phase of the Mercer Commons project," said 3CDC president and CEO Stephen G. Leeper. "Without partners like U.S. Bank, we would not be able to succeed in the revitalization efforts of Cincinnati's urban core."

You can find hard hats and hammers on almost every street in the neighborhood since the project started in May of 2013.

Construction workers and developers are turning the neighborhood inside out, from brand new condominiums to four-story garages.

This past June, 3CDC's VP of Communications Anastasia Mileham says that Mercer Commons is one of their largest projects.

"It's almost three acres, two city blocks. It spans the area between Vine and Walnut Street," explained Mileham.

It includes a 340 space parking garage and 67 apartments in historic buildings, half of which will be for affordable-housing.

"I think adding residents, both low-income and market rate apartments, will help rebuild this neighborhood that once had 50,000 people living in it," said Mileham.

3CDC also has seven other projects in the works, including the new Bakery Loft condominiums on Race Street that opened in April.

"It's nine condos, and they are all sold out," revealed Mileham, who says that proves the high demand to live in OTR.

"I think it is a place where people want to be. People like a walkable community. They like an urban neighborhood, and filling these vacant spaces is really bringing life back into a community that was once just that," said Mileham.

The Mercer Commons Apartments will not be ready until fall of 2014. Mercer Garage opened in May.

Learn more about 3CDC projects here: www.3CDC.org.

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