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City finalizes property sale to CDC for new NIOSH facility in Avondale

NIOSH campus plans.png
City of Cincinnati
Rendering of the planned NIOSH facility in Avondale.

Cincinnati Council this week finalized the sale of some property uptown for the construction of a new CDC facility. It’s one of the final steps in a project dating back 15 years.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has two facilities in the city that will be consolidated into one.

“We proposed that this would be the best place for a consolidation project, really to retain all of the jobs associated with CDC and NIOSH,” said Morgan Sutter, city grant administrator. “This is a really critical employer in our region. We enjoy having these positions in the city and really wanted to fight to keep them here.”

The site is just off Martin Luther King Drive at Reading Road and Ridgeway. The CDC will pay about $3 million for the city-owned property, which includes the cost of installing a new water main along Reading Road.

“You've got stormwater infrastructure, we have bicycle and multimodal facilities here, a new SORTA bus stop, we've got expanded sidewalk access,” Sutter said. “So this is really bringing a lot of great features to bear in the development.”

The project will include several other lots in the area owned by the University of Cincinnati, mostly made up of surface parking lots.

The city-owned property includes the Cincinnati Parks Operations Center, which houses about 20 full-time employees and some parks vehicles and equipment. Officials say plans are in place to move those to another existing facility.

When NIOSH announced the final site selection in 2017, the facility was estimated to be open by early 2021.

Construction is now estimated to begin in late 2023.

A map of the lots the City of Cincinnati is selling to the CDC
City of Cincinnati
The new NIOSH facility will take up the entire area in yellow; lots outlined in red are the city-owned properties sold to the CDC this week.

Becca Costello grew up in Williamsburg and Batavia (in Clermont County) listening to WVXU. Before joining the WVXU newsroom, she worked in public radio & TV journalism in Bloomington, Indiana and Lincoln, Nebraska. Becca has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including from local chapters of the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists, and contributed to regional and national Murrow Award winners. Becca has a master's degree in journalism from Indiana University and a bachelor's degree from Cincinnati Christian University. Becca's dog Cincy (named for the city they once again call home) is even more anxious than she is.