CITY SPOTLIGHT: Cincinnati on the Rebound

Cincinnati Music Hall

This post is the first in a new series on the CNU Salons, CITY SPOTLIGHT. City Spotlight shines a light on the latest news, developments and initiatives occurring in cities and towns where CNU members live and work.

The below post focuses on Cincinnati  and comes courtesy of CNU Communications Intern, and University of Cincinnati Urban Planning student, Katie Poppel.

 Many mid-sized cities around the United States are vying for economic revival in the next decade; cities like Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, and St. Louis continue to plan ahead for a sustainable future. Regions and metropolises are banding together to create urban centers with broad ranges of communities. By partly following in the steps of revival after the Great Depression, cities everywhere are investing millions into public, private, and public and private partnerships to breathe new life into our cities. Cincinnati is no exception.

A lot is happening in Cincinnati… to say the least.

The past few years have shown the problems within the city: the aging combined sewer system, lack of young professionals, a large amount of downtown urban deterioration, dependency on the automobile, etc. Yet, the identity of these problems has only led to an abundance of action. (Whether you believe the action is good or bad, it is action.) An abundance of revival plans have popped up in and around the Cincinnati and its metropolis.

Recent CNU Charter Award Honorable Mention, Revive Cincinnati, focused on the Lower Mill Creek Corridor revitalization combined with the upgrading the combined sewer overflow system for a healthier Cincinnati. Agenda 360 is attacking the economic revival within the downtown core and radiating out. Vision 2015 is the Northern Kentucky regional plan to stimulate growth and better Northern Kentucky’s future as a community. OKI’s 2040 Regional Transportation Plan defines the future transportation goals for the surrounding Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana counties. Plan Cincinnati, (the new long-range comprehensive plan,) is the first of its kind for the City in nearly 30 years; the comprehensive plan strives to create a vision for the coming decades in terms of physical development. The Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC) is a non-profit corporation, funded by Cincinnati’s leading businesses and companies, revitalizing Over-the-Rhine and Cincinnati’s core. The Metropolitan Sewer District of Great Cincinnati has started Project Groundwork to combat the combined sewage overflow problem. The City of Cincinnati, in partnership with private businesses and non-profits, has plans to bring back the streetcar to downtown. Needless to say, there are more than a few solutions have been proposed to better the Cincinnati region in the future. 

The Cincinnati metropolis has identified its weaknesses and problems, only to solidify solutions and strengths. But where do the citizens of Cincinnati stand on these issues? Are these revival plans really leading to a more sustainable city, or rather just a more ‘economically prosperous’ city? More sustainable practices, New Urbanism included, are woven into the very foundation of revitalization; some problems Cincinnati plans to attack can be solved with New Urbanist principles and techniques. The next parts of this series will explore the issues Cincinnati has faced and what is means for the future of the city. First Up: Plan Cincinnati.

Stay tuned for Part II of City Spotlight's look at Cincinnati. 


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