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Old Posted Mar 23, 2005, 4:47 PM
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grasscat grasscat is offline
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OK...the name of the project has been changed to "The Ascent at Roebling's Bridge". Here's an article from the 3/23/05 Kentucky Post:

Covington's new jewel
Futuristic high-rise to boldly repaint skyline

By Jeanne Houck
Post staff reporter

Magnificent. Inspirational. Unique. A work of art.

Those were words used by Covington residents, business leaders and city officials Monday after reviewing Corporex Cos.' plans for "The Ascent at Roebling's Bridge," a futuristic condominium high-rise on the riverfront.

In separate hearings, world-renowned architect Daniel Libeskind presented the city's Architectural Review Board and then civic leaders and Covington residents his plans for a 21-floor, crescent-shaped tower with large glass windows and an asymmetrical "swooshing" roof.

Even people with questions about the tower, proposed to be built just west of the Roebling Suspension Bridge, could not help but praise the plans drawn up by Libeskind, who was chosen to design new buildings for the World Trade Center site in New York City.

"It's hard for me to accept the design because I like 19th century architecture, Victorian architecture," said Pat Flannery, who lives in the Historic Licking Riverside neighborhood. "But far be it from me to stand in the way of such a magnificent-looking building."

On Monday, the city's architectural review board agreed to recommend the City Commission approve plans for the tower, which is to include 80 upscale condominiums on 18 floors and a lobby, plaza, swimming pool, restaurant and, perhaps, some retail space, on the other three floors.

Referring to the beauty and boldness of the design, architectural review board member Robert Lape said, "This would be a sculpture located next to the Suspension Bridge, basically."

Next Monday, Covington's Urban Design Review Board will review plans for The Ascent at Roebling's Bridge and make a recommendation to the City Commission, which will have final say.

Covington Commissioner Jerry Stricker attended both hearings Monday.

"I'm in favor of this because it makes a statement and, like Covington is the gateway to the South, this would be a special gateway to Covington," he said.

The site proposed for the building is the former home of the Coach and Four restaurant, east of the intersection of East RiverCenter Boulevard and Scott Boulevard.Corporex officials declined to estimate the cost of the project or of the condominiums, although they said last year that the condominiums -- which will range from 1,200 to 6,000 square feet and have spectacular views of Cincinnati and Covington -- would cost at least $350,000 apiece.

Decisions have yet to be made on some things such as building materials, they said.

But they hope to begin construction this summer and complete the project in two years.

As planned, The Ascent at Roebling's Bridge would be a huge departure from the conventional office towers and box-like hotels and public buildings surrounding it.

Yet Libeskind said he designed the tower to harmonize with the residential and commercial neighborhood around it.

The tower, in earth tones with windows that would reflect blue skies, would echo the colors of the Suspension Bridge, he said.

He said the shape of the tower would mirror the bridge's cables and the tower's highest point would stand no taller and its lowest point no shorter than surrounding buildings.

Covington resident Sherry Carran said developers cleared up some design questions she had.

"I had concerns about the way the building 'swooshed' and the height of the building on the south end, but they explained how it will open up the skyline and let the area breathe," she said.

John Bezold of Alexandria, a first-year architecture student at the University of Cincinnati, stopped by Monday to see Libeskind make his presentations.

"We watched a film about him, and it was really interesting to see him in person," Bezold said. "His design is inspiring."

Libeskind said the city "has a unique site here, and this building would fit perfectly on this site."

He also urged people to consider that "history is not a story that is over."

Kathie Hickey, Renaissance manager for the city of Covington, applauded that sentiment.

"At some point in time, this is going to be labeled an historic landmark in Covington," she said.
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