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VISION: “A purposeful destination for working, living and playing.” - City Council’s Strategic Plan 2010

“The American Cape” Downtown CBD

The CORE (Consortium for Ongoing Reinvestment Efforts) Fund invites you to participate in Hamilton, Ohio’s urban renaissance. The Fund will make a significant difference in our community over the next ten years. It is a major component of the City’s goal of restoring our urban core to a position of prominence furthering the region’s economic prosperity and quality of life.

What is the CORE Fund? The CORE Fund provides financial resources for qualified residential and commercial real estate projects within Hamilton’s urban core. By leveraging a multitude of financial tools into one powerful partnership, the CORE Fund is able to maximize results of strategic projects that will revitalize the city. Established as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3), the CORE works with the City of Hamilton, the State of Ohio, and members of Hamilton’s corporate community to establish a model of excellence for Hamilton’s urban redevelopment.

“Through the CORE Fund, Hamilton is making an aggressive statement about 21st Century urban development.� - Chris Bortz

Towne Properties

High Street Downtown CBD

What is Hamilton’s urban core?

Main St.

Downtown CBD

E. High Gateway & Dayton Lane High St.

South East Railroad


The Great Miami River

Hamilton’s urban core is considered to be the downtown central business district and the immediately surrounding areas of German Village, Rossville, South East, and the East High Gateway & Dayton Lane. The focus of the CORE Fund will be on these areas, but not limited to them.

German Village

German Village Rossville

E. High Gateway & Dayton Lane

Downtown CBD

South East

Clockwise from top left: SHP Leading Design @ The Mercantile Lofts; Kofenya & MUH Downtown @ The Robinson-Schwenn Building; The atrium commons @ The Mercantile Lofts; Park Terrace Apartments in Rossville; Complete streets on Joe Nuxhall Blvd.; Art Off Symmes @ The Mercantile Lofts; The Lane Public Library in German Village

Why does Hamilton, Ohio need the CORE Fund? Hamilton is on a redevelopment trajectory that must be further encouraged and promoted. To expedite and incentivize investment in the city center, the CORE Fund will utilize an assortment of financing tools. These tools include: New

Market Tax Credits Preservation Tax Credits Equity Financing Gap Financing Historic

The current economic climate requires partnerships with lending institutions to explore nontraditional methods of financing, while reducing risk. The CORE Fund will not only provide the necessary capital to reduce financial risk, but also offer a strategic framework from which projects can be initiated.

What are the CORE Fund’s intended results? The CORE Fund enables a transformation. It delivers on the City’s four strategic goals: We

Create Economic Opportunity Create a Positive Image We Connect People We Create a Sense of Place We

The CORE Fund has a greater purpose than to solve a specific functional problem, such as creating an investment platform or to provide an amenity -- its purpose is the innovative, continuous regeneration of Hamilton’s urban fabric. The central goal of CORE is to create a dynamic process that impels and guides existing and subsequent development. If successful, not only will it transform Hamilton from a rust belt town into a sustainable center of urbanism, but offer a shining example of what extensive yet focused action achieves.

“You can’t rely on bringing people downtown, you have to put them there.” - Jane Jacobs

The Death and Life of Great American Cities

Mercantile Lofts Downtown CBD

Liberty Building Downtown CBD

What are the CORE Fund’s investment criteria? Simple, focused, powerful; these are drivers in our approach to investments. Projects must demonstrate the potential for quick and substantial impact. We carefully examine and evaluate all projects on 4 principle [DRAFT] characteristics: Feasibility - Project must demonstrate financial viability given reasonable assumptions regarding market potential. Quality - Project must have quality design and materials that complement neighborhood character and add value to the community. Need - Project can’t be financed entirely through conventional methods. Diversity - Project helps its neighborhood provide a mix of housing options.

How does the CORE Fund underwrite and structure transactions? The CORE Fund seeks to leverage capital, incentives, and resources which align to meet the strategically defined objectives. CORE considers new market tax credits, historic preservation tax credits, equity and gap financing. These approaches can be structured short or long term. All financial approaches are intensively reviewed to ensure they are screened to meet priorities. All applications are evaluated based upon their alignment with the City’s strategic goals.

Who are the leaders of the CORE Fund? The initial sponsors of the CORE Fund are Claude Davis, CEO of First Financial Bank, and the Hamilton Community Foundation. Major investors actively participate on the CORE Fund’s Board of Directors and/or serve on the Fund’s Loan Committee. Kenny Craig serves as the Executive Director of the CORE Fund. Mr. Craig is also the President and CEO of the Greater Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.

“The importance of creative financing on historic development projects cannot be overstated. The CORE Fund is exciting for us as we transition from the Hamilton Mercantile Lofts to our next project in downtown Hamilton.� - Steve Coon

Historic Developers LLC

SHP Leading Design Downtown CBD

North Second Street German Village

South D Street Rossville

Why will the CORE Fund be successful? Since its founding in 1791, Hamilton has had to reinvent itself countless times, from outpost to fort, from river town to industrial manufacturing giant. The story is that of a dynamic city comprised of adaptive, creative and thriving enterprises and people who meet the needs of changing times. We are in a similar phase of reinvention today, where we are inspired by Hamilton’s storied past, but not defined by it. Our remarkable past is a story written upon our invaluable landscape of natural resources, geography, human capital, and most importantly our ingenuity in writing those new chapters in Hamilton’s history. The CORE Fund is Hamilton’s new chapter, a new generation’s approach towards the remaking of Hamilton, not separate from history, but one determined to create its own. Since 1791 this has been a city of pioneers and trail blazers, with the CORE Fund we can again assist this century’s pioneers in discovering the ageless Hamilton spirit.

The timing for the CORE Fund is now! Daniel H. Burnham, the Father of Modern Planning famously said “Make not little plans; they have no magic.� In Hamilton we are calling out for big things-big vision, big projects that recapture the historic spirit of Hamilton. A coordinated and revolutionary approach to development will send a strong and resonating message to lenders, investors, and entrepreneurs that Hamilton is serious about its future. The timing of the fund meets the newly focused agenda of the City which concentrates on the economic, social, and cultural fundamentals that are truly important to a reinvigorated urban core, and the coordinated execution of funds. CORE seeks to leverage the urgent character of now towards a positive sustained path that will reposition Hamilton, not simply on the path of recovery, but resurgence.

Journal Square Downtown CBD


Consortium for Ongoing Reinvestment Efforts

CORE Fund  

CORE Fund for Hamilton Economic Development