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Blue Ash agrees to intervene against Duke pipeline Marika Lee


A rendering of the roundabout that will be replacing the intersection of Montgomery Road and Ronald Reagan Cross County Highway.

BLUE ASH – Blue Ash agreed to add its name to the list of communities that will legally intervene against Duke Energy’s natural gas pipeline. Blue Ash City Council on Thursday unanimously passed a motion that will allow City Solicitor Bryan Pacheco to participate in “any joint intervention petition opposing the proposed amended Duke pipeline project and to authorize the city manager to expend funds necessary to effectuate the city’s involve-

ment in the joint intervention petition.” As part of its Central Corridor Pipeline Extension project, Duke Energy is proposing building a 12-mile long, 20-inch natural gas pipeline from the Lebanon to the Norwood areas to improve gas reliability for customers. Duke has submitted a preferred route and an alternate route to the Ohio Power Siting Board which will make the final decision on its location. Both routes run through Blue Ash. See PIPELINE, Page 2A

Montgomery, county make deal for roundabout Marika Lee

The Hamilton County Commissioners agreed to sell more than 10 acres to the city of Montgomery for the Gateway Redevelopment Area project. “I think this is one of the best, if not the best, current development sites in Hamilton County,” Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune said at the Montgomery City Council meeting on Feb. 1. The city agreed to purchase about 10 acres near the intersection of Ronald Reagan Cross County Highway and Montgomery Road, including the bridge and ramps, from Hamilton County. The city will pay $500,000 for the property, Councilman Craig Margolis said. The city plans to turn the intersection into a roundabout as part of development of the former Chevrolet and Ford dealerships at the south entrance of the city. The site, also called the Gateway Redevelopment Area, is being turned into a mixed-use development with condos and town homes, office space with a parking structure and restaurants and retail space by Gateway Partners LLC. There are


Blue Ash City Council agreed to intervene with Duke Energy’s natural gas pipeline.


A rendering of the Gateway Development Area at the south entrance of Montgomery.

Symmes Township hires administrator finance, safety services and economic development. Symmes Township has been Nearly two years after sep- without a full-time administraaration from its last adminis- tor since parting ways in trator, Symmes TownMarch 2015 with Brian ship Board of Trustees Eliff. hired Kimberly LapenIn the absence of an see to fill the job. administrator, the Lapensee has 24 president of the townyears’ experience in loship’s board of trustees cal government and is has been serving as incurrently the assistant terim administrator for township administrator Lapensee no additional pay. in Fairfield Township. Lapensee will begin Symmes Trustee work Feb. 6. She will be Vice President Ken Bryant paid $90,000 per year. said in a news release that LaTrustee President Jodie pensee will be a great asset to Leis said in a news release that the community. she is excited to have Lapensee She has an extensive back- as the “face of our township.” ground in planning and zoning, Sheila Vilvens

also plans for a boutique hotel and a park. “We greatly appreciate the relationship we have with Hamilton County. With just the two dealership sites this was a good project. With Hamilton County’s land, this is a great project. We picked up 7 to 8 acres of developable land,” Mayor Chris Dobroszi said. The newly purchased property brings total acreage of the site to 21.5 acres. “This is going to lead to in excess of 1,000 jobs in Hamilton County and that is great for all of us,” Portune said. With improvements to the interchange, Portune added,

the project could qualify for additional state funding under House Bill 53 as a transportation improvement and business development district. “I believe this will be a template for other development sites that we will be able to support throughout Hamilton County,” Portune said. The city received a $6 million grant from the Ohio Kentucky Indiana Regional Council of Governments for the roundabout. Total cost for the roundabout is $8.6 million. Construction is estimated to begin in 2020. See ROUNDABOUT, Page 2A


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