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Banks signs hotel tenant (Video)

| Cincinnati Business Courier | by Erin Caproni and Chris Wetterich

The pace of progress at the Banks mixed-use development is picking up.

Members of the Joint Banks Steering Committee, the city-county coordinating committee overseeing the project, unanimously recommended an AC Hotel by Marriott developed by two local companies, a first for the project.

Under the terms of the deal, Eagle Realty, the real estate arm of Western & Southern, and Winegardner & Hammons will develop the $35 million project after being sold the land along Joe Nuxhall Way by the Banks’ master developers, Atlanta-based Carter and The Dawson Co. Winegardner & Hammons will manage the hotel. The Cincinnati City Council and the Hamilton County Commission are expected to approve the deal this week and the hotel will open in spring 2017. Construction is expected to begin by this fall.

There are two main surprises about the project:
It’s a high-end hotel that won’t receive any taxpayer assistance. Mayor John Cranley ruled out city assistance for the hotel project, but Carter has asked for and received public subsidies throughout the Banks initiative, including direct grants or property tax abatements. Carter and the third-party developers will get neither this time.
Carter had long proposed a more downscale hotel, such as a Hilton Garden Inn. The developer told the city and county that a full-service hotel like the AC Marriott would require a generous public subsidy, but Reds owner Bob Castellini insisted on a first-class hotel.

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