Former Covington admin. building to get taller, add apartments in ‘iconic’ project

The project completes a two-step that began five years ago with the redevelopment of the Bavarian Brewery.

Former jail, government offices to become apartments in Covington

KENTON COUNTY, Ky. (FOX19) - Some of Cincinnati’s most well known local developers are planning a $31 million transformation of the former Covington administration and jail building.

The project, dubbed The Hayden, would create 133 apartments, including studios, one-bedrooms and two-bedrooms, according to a City of Covington release Friday.

The development team, which includes Cincinnati developers Al Neyer Inc. and Urban Sites, plans to add two stories to the 10-story building at 303 Court Street as well as create an entirely new exterior. Some 6,000 square feet of ground-level commercial space will be available for lease.

Construction is scheduled to begin on July 15. The renovation is expected to take two years.

Dan Ruh, executive vice president at Al Neyer, said the developer was drawn to the project by the walkability of the neighborhood, including its restaurants, bars, coffee shops, a bagel shop, a bookstore, a public library and numerous large employers.

“It’s going to bring a lot of residents to what is already a pretty vibrant part of our downtown,” said Covington City Manager Dan Hassert.

The building opened in 1969 as a joint city-county government administration center. Prisoners were also housed there in jail cells for much of the building’s life, according to Covington Mayor Joe Meyer, who calls The Hayden “another iconic addition” to the city’s Roebling Point area.

Kenton County moved its administration offices to the former Bavarian Brewery in 2016 in another adaptive reuse project hailed as iconic. The Hayden’s current development team then took possession of 303 Court Street.

The jail cells will be removed and the interior will be gutted as part of the project. The low-rise addition that fronts Scott Street will also be demolished, according to the city release. A surface lot will take its place. The county will also provide spaces for residents in its nearby parking garage.

“Couldn’t be more excited to bring The Hayden with its breath-taking views to one of the Tri-State’s greatest neighborhoods,” said Danny Lipson, chief development officer of Urban Sites.

The Covington Board of Commissioners approved $500,000 in city TIF money this week for public infrastructure improvements to sidewalks, utilities and streetscapes.

A 20-year property tax abatement was also approved. The developers will make annual payments to Covington Schools.

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