Cincinnati Close to First New Masterplan in 32 Years

Midwest, Newsletter
Thursday, August 23, 2012
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Downtown Cincinnati. (Firesign/Flickr)

Downtown Cincinnati. (Firesign/Flickr)

Cincinnati, a city on the move, released a draft of its first master plan since 1980 in anticipation of approval by the planning commission August 30. The 222-page draft identifies five “initiative areas,” dubbed Compete, Connect, Live, Sustain, and Collaborate. Each contain tasks for growth over approximately ten years, according to the plan, although the document will receive annual budget reviews and will be officially updated every five years.

(Courtesy MapGrapher)

(Courtesy MapGrapher)

Those five initiative areas encompass virtually everything that forms the fabric of urban life, from economic development to sustainable transportation. Recent efforts to expand the city’s support for arts and culture in marginal neighborhoods have been lauded by community groups. But the master planners in the Queen City have their work cut out for them.

Urban voters have lost significant sway in Ohio’s 1st Congressional District over the past two decades as political gerrymandering, population loss, and the state’s loss of two Dongressional districts has taken its toll. An interesting graphic from MapGrapher above shows how new district boundaries helped dilute the stock of voters living within city limits by nearly 40 percent since the 1990s. Despite progress in strengthening its urban core, a fraught suburban-urban relationship still threatens the city’s long-term prospects for growth. The master plan captures some of the city’s optimism, however, which luckily is in no short supply.

More information about the plan will be presented at 6:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers, 801 Plum Street on August 30.

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