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Light-up Swings, Outdoor Concerts, Part Of Uptown Development

Uptown Consortium
Outdoor ping pong and chess tables are part of Innovation Greenway.

Imagine playing chess on dedicated outdoor tables, or sitting in light-up swings powered by solar. As UC and others try to recruit researchers to work at the northeast quadrant of MLK and Reading roads and other nearby developments, green space is becoming especially important. Uptown Consortium, Inc. (UCI) also wants to increase connectivity with surrounding neighborhoods.

The green space project on the northeast corner of MLK and Reading is called Innovation Greenway. It's evolving, according to UCI President Beth Robinson.

"Into a world-class outdoor space that we feel will not only provide the walking and biking opportunities but also we have space for community events and gathering points; maybe space for some outdoor meetings," she says.

This week UCI unveiled new renderings.

UCI - made up of UC, UC Health, Children's Hospital, the Cincinnati Zoo and Tri-Health - began planning for a tech development after the MLK interchange at I-71 was announced. This involved buying and assembling property around the interchange, including parking lots and blighted properties.

The entire Uptown Innovation Corridor (all four corners of the intersection and beyond) is 65 acres.

Avondale leaders have been at the design table throughout the process and Executive Director of the Avondale Development Corporation Russell Hairston told WVXU last fall, "We think it's an excellent opportunity to connect all of the Uptown neighborhoods, and to the Wasson Way trail." He says, "I think it will open up those doors and those self-imposed, if you will, barriers to neighborhoods."

Credit Sasaki / Uptown Consortium
Uptown Consortium
Solar panel technology plays a key role in this new development.

"You can imagine maybe bringing concerts there over the lunch hour for the office tenants and neighborhood folks to gather," says Robinson. "The sky's the limit on what we can do." 

What Makes Up The Development At MLK And Reading?

  • The Node, a mixed-use development and Innovation Greenway (northeast corner)
  • UC's Digital Futures Complex, to be finished in 2021 (southeast corner)
  • Mixed-use development (southwest corner)
  • NIOSH, or National Institute for Occupational Safety, a 14-acre development (northwest corner)

Innovation Greenway is expected to cost $12-13 million and construction will begin by the end of 2022.

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.