Twelve new townhouses being built in the 1400 block of Pleasant Street in Over-The-Rhine, as the final phase of City Home Cincinnati are already sold out, and the company behind the transformation has left its surburban roots to build new ones in the city's urban core. The new townhouses are the final phase of the development by Schickel Design Company. The block's renovation began in 2006, and when finished it will blend historic OTR architecture with modern living, complete with private yards. The new homes also include parking. Seven houses are registered to be LEED-certified and the other five, built during the project's initial phase, have received Energy Star’s highest rating. “This is a testament to the value design provides," says Schickel Design principal Martha Schickel Dorff. "The new construction meets the requirements of an upscale modern buyer, yet capitalizes on the beautiful fabric of small lots, alleys and pocket green spaces of this historic walkable neighborhood.” Dorff designed City Home Cincinnati to appeal to young families and older buyers. Once finished, the project will have added 25 new homes to an area better known for blight than beauty. The project accomplishes its goals while using 100 percent of the existing historic shells of buildings. The new homes, which extend continued development in OTR westward toward Findlay Market and Music Hall, have already received plenty of praise. In 2009, they were named Greater Cincinnati’s Most Outstanding Collaborative Effort, and in the same year Cincinnati Magazine dubbed the area the city's "Best Street Makeover." Further kudos have come from Urban Land Magazine and Over-the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce. To top it all off, Schickel Design itself is making an investment in the neighborhood. They recently moved from their Loveland location, which has been the companies’ home since being founded in 1948, to OTR.
By Evan Wallis