FC Cincinnati has commenced demolition work in preparation for a new $300m (£247m/€279m) mixed-use district adjacent to TQL Stadium, with the Major League Soccer club taking inspiration from similar projects near major stadiums in the US.
The district will include a hotel, apartments, office space, retail, restaurants and a privately-owned public green space. It will be located in the West End, adjacent to Over-the-Rhine and near Downtown Cincinnati.
FC Cincinnati cited three mixed-use districts as inspirations for its plans. One is Gallagher Way, which is adjacent to Wrigley Field, home of Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs.
Another is The Wharf, which is located close to Nationals Park and Audi Field, the respective homes of MLB’s Washington Nationals and MLS team DC United. The third district mentioned by FC Cincinnati is Titletown at Lambeau Field, home of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers.
The first phase of demolition work for FC Cincinnati’s district will include three buildings south of Liberty Street between Central Parkway, Central Avenue and Wade Street. Local demolition contractor O’Rourke will take the buildings down to grade level, with demolition expected to be completed this summer.
Jeff Berding, co-chief executive of FC Cincinnati, said: “We intend to make Cincinnati a championship city beyond the soccer season. The district will create a community hub at the front steps of our home field, rooted in history and legacy, that aesthetically inspires and emotionally unites our city with a vision for the future. This holds true to our core values and culture as a team.”
Chad Munitz, the club’s chief development officer, added: “FC Cincinnati will serve as master developer and master mixed-use operations manager for the district and engage experienced third-party professional consultants to assist in executing the master development plan.
“We believe this is a seven- to eight-year development. We started demolition today with the first buildings complete by the end of 2025.”
FC Cincinnati announced last year that the district’s hotel will be developed by The Compendium. Marquee Development, a real estate developer with professional sports experience, is serving as the initial master development consultant.
Marquee has developed urban sites adjacent to sports stadiums, including the aforementioned Gallagher Way in Chicago and the North Loop Green adjacent to the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field stadium.
Government Strategies Group will manage government and community relations, with an architect and construction management company to be engaged soon. J.S. Held will serve as the owners’ representative.
FC Cincinnati opened TQL Stadium in May 2021 after breaking ground on the project in December 2018. The 26,000-seat stadium was built at a cost of $250m.