Construction is continuing
January 12, 2009
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The Northern Kentucky University community will begin to see new development around the campus in the coming months.
The land where Thriftway and NKU Hermann Center use to stand will be in the works of developing a hotel, restaurants and business buildings on the property purchased by the NKU Foundation in 2001, according to executive director Karen Zerhusen Kruer.
‘The Thriftway was owned by a private owner and the university owns some of the land and the Foundation did some transfers with university to get the corner spot on U.S. 27,’ Kruer said.
The NKU Foundation is an independent, non-profit, tax-exempt public charity incorporated in Kentucky that receives and manages private gifts to NKU.
The Foundation wants to develop the area to draw people to the university and have the ease of being close to campus and the Bank of Kentucky Center.
Kruer said the NKU Foundation is working with Corporex, a real estate development and financial investment company, to develop the land.
‘We are very fortunate to have Corporex, with their expertise and being local and have the interest they have with working with the university on this,’ Kruer said.
Both the Foundation and Corporex are in the beginning stages of the deal. According to Kruer, the two companies are ‘in the feasibility and design stage’ of the development.
As far as going beyond the designing stage, Kruer said that it would be a couple of months before there is any more advancement in development of the property.
‘ ‘We are hoping that the Bank of Kentucky Center will be a big driver for us,’ Kruer said. ‘The people that are wanting to come to NKU events and for entertainment, will have the opportunity to stay at the hotel. It will also be great for families when it comes time for commencement.’
In other developments that are going on near NKU, Midland Retail is developing the area along Interstate 471 and Alexandria Pike, at the intersection of Sunset Drive.
Midland Retail, a local development firm based out of Cincinnati, is in the midst of developing a Chipotle restaurant and Panera Bread on the land, according to their Web site.
Also, Asbury United Methodist Church and the City of Highland Heights negotiated on a purchase of nine acres of land, according to Pastor John Boyd.
‘They are basically moving across the street,’ Boyd said.
The Highland Heights City Building currently sits on Johns Hill Road across from the land that was purchased. That building has been purchased by NKU to build a soccer complex for the 2010 season.
Asbury United Methodist Church had been in talks with Collegiate Development, a development firm based out of Irving, Texas.
Boyd said, that there had been talks between his church and Collegiate Development for over a year and a half.
The Northerner contacted Brian Jones, Vice President of Development for Collegiate Development. The interview was abruptly ended after Jones said the deal was, ‘Dead.’
‘There were a lot of hurdles to jump through and we jumped through them together,’ Boyd said. ‘But we had a contract that was to go to closing in December and they couldn’t meet the obligation of closing the deal.’
After Collegiate Development didn’t meet that obligation, Asbury United Methodist Church decided to move to their second bidder, which was the City of Highland Heights.