Home News Sale of iconic Downtown Cincinnati hotel clears way for redevelopment

Sale of iconic Downtown Cincinnati hotel clears way for redevelopment

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Cincinnati (for inquiries) – Cincinnati’s iconic Terrace Plaza Hotel has officially acquired new owners after a four-year legal battle between the city and its former custodians. Inquirer.

Anthony Birkla of Birkla Investment Group last week purchased a property on Sixth Street for $10 million through his affiliate Cincinnati Development III LLC.

Birkla has been trying to acquire since 2018.

“The acquisition of this property has been a long and arduous journey for Birkla Investment Group. Instead, I would like to work on the renovation.”

The sale comes less than five months after the Cincinnati City Council voted to reject the former Terrace Plaza Hotel’s local landmark designation. Conservationists have sought landmark status for years, noting the building’s reputation as one of the first high-rise commercial projects in the post-World War II United States. Denying the building its status as a local landmark means that its next owner, the current Birchra, has decided to change the controversial windowless façade known as the “Brick Box” to the history of the city. It meant there was no need to go through a public protection board.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Terrace Plaza Hotel was listed as one of the 11 most endangered assets in the country in 2020 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Despite these approvals, the original design from 1948 is unprotected.

April 1956: An aerial view of Cincinnati clearly shows the Central Trust Tower, Carew Tower, Terrace Plaza Hotel, Hotel Sinton, and Dixie Terminal.(Cincinnati Enquirer)

Over the past five years, Birkla has articulated plans for an 18-story building. He wants to renovate his first floor retail section, from the ground floor he wants to convert up to seven floors into a car park and the hotel tower into apartments.

Moorman said Birkla is considering doing market analysis to determine whether the top two floors of the “brick box” could be used for other purposes, such as office space. The original Gourmet Room at the Terrace Plaza Hotel will also be revived by the restaurant group that operates Prime Cincinnati downtown.Cincinnati architecture firm Reztalc Design Studio Brought into concept design.

But before all these changes can take place, Birkla needs to stabilize the building. After being vacant for 14 years, the building has fallen into serious disrepair both on the outside and inside after the hotel’s last major tenant, Hilton, moved out.

In 2018, part of the façade fell onto a parked car, and in 2018, a pipe burst, causing severe water damage. Moormann said the drywall had been cast and a large amount of asbestos was found in the length properties of the block.

The previous owner, Cincinnati Terrace Associates LLC, a subsidiary of Brooklyn, New York-based JNY Capital, purchased the building for $9.5 million in 2018, but plans to redevelop it were quickly derailed. .

The company then began piling up several code violations over deteriorating building conditions, leading to the city filing a pollution lawsuit against the owner in 2019. This eventually put the property on the verge of being sold at the 2021 Hamilton County Sheriff’s Foreclosure Auction. , however, the owner defaulted on the mortgage, filed for bankruptcy, and later lost control of the building.

The Land Bank of Hamilton County temporarily held the property, but recently transferred the deed to a company in Birchula.

One of the many problems surrounding aging structures includes the unstable 6th Avenue awning. This is one of the city’s top priorities in ensuring pedestrian street safety. The city is also asking Birkla to remove a metal cooling tower on top of the building. Moormann said the developers plan to address these issues before moving forward with the development plan.

Details about when demolition and restoration of the interior will begin will be determined shortly. The building’s current street level tenants – Batsakes Hat Shop, Wendel’s and H&D Beauty Supply – will be relocated ahead of construction.

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