Friday, March 16, 2001

Shillito Place joins the renaissance

Loft apartments renting quickly

By Lew Moores
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        It hasn't opened yet, but already two-thirds of the newly renovated loft apartments at 107 Shillito Place have been rented, which city officials and the private developer see as another sign of the demand for downtown housing.

[photo] City Manager John Shirey tours a Shillito Place apartment, part of the downtown housing renaissance.
(Tony Jones photo)
| ZOOM |
        The developer and city officials held a grand opening Thursday of the Shillito Place Loft Apartments, located in the former Baker Shoe Building on Shillito Place and Race Street, across from the former Lazarus department store.

        Twelve of the 18 apartments — efficiency and two-bedroom — have been rented, but tenants will not be able to move in for another couple of weeks, said Barry Randman, president of Redmont Development.

        “There is a great demand for downtown housing,” said Mr. Randman, whose company began developing the property in 1995. For more than a decade, the upper floors of the seven-story building, built in 1915, have been vacant.

        “This is the latest in efforts to increase the supply in housing downtown,” said Cincinnati City Manager John Shirey. “It's close to everything going on downtown. That's what the renaissance of downtown housing is all about.”

    There are three units on each of six floors. City and private officials say they appeal to the middle-class professional and are affordable. The efficiency apartments at 600 square feet rent for $585 a month. The two-bedroom, 1,250-square-foot apartments rent for $985, and the two-bedroom, 1,325-square-foot apartments go for $1,075.
    All units feature 12-foot ceilings, hardwood floors, gas fireplaces, equipped kitchens and large windows. All have access to a roof deck and penthouse party room.
        The $1.7 million project is a public-private partnership, with the city giving $397,000 in loans to develop the property.

        “People are lining up to move back into these buildings,” said Peg Moertl, director of the city's department of neighborhood services. “The historic architecture in this area is phenomenal. Some of these buildings have been waiting for a renaissance.”

        A recent study by Downtown Cincinnati Inc. showed demand for downtown housing is growing faster than units are being built.


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