Chatfield to Renovate OTR Building for Permanent Campus
Work has begun renovating a historic building in Over-the-Rhine as a permanent campus for Chatfield College.
“We have been a part of the Over-the-Rhine community for many years, and we are committed to the future of this area and the population it serves,” says Chatfield President John P. Tafaro. “When it became apparent that we outgrew our leased space above Mercy/St. John’s Social Services, and began planning for a permanent Campus, we chose to invest in the revitalization of Over-the-Rhine because we believe this area should have a regionally accredited liberal arts college here to serve its residents, as well as adult-learners and traditional-aged students in surrounding neighborhoods.”
The 18,000 sq. ft. building at 1544 Central Parkway will include classroom space, science and performing/visual arts labs, a high-tech learning center, and an intimate Chapel. It’s just blocks away from Findlay Market, ensuring easy access to nine city bus lines, bike lanes, and eventually the new streetcar — especially important because Chatfield students rely on public transportation.
The property has a rich history. It sits on the iconic southeast corner of Central Parkway and Liberty Streets, both major OTR thoroughfares, and is across from the Cincinnati Ballet. Built in 1870, it originally housed a stable for Windisch-Mulhauser/Lion Brewery. The Cincinnati Association for the Welfare of the Blind purchased it and 1924, built a large addition, and operated a broom factory there for many years. Vacant for several years, it most recently housed a printing company.
The exterior of the property will retain its historic character and the project has qualified for federal historic tax credits. Endeavor Construction is the general contractor, and work is expected to take ten months. Emersion Design is the project architect, and Gray & Pape served as historic consultant. Project assistance has been provided by the City of Cincinnati, with significant MBE, union, and SBE participation anticipated.
Although work has begun, plans are underway for a ceremonial groundbreaking on November 8th from 10 am to noon. A brief ceremony will be followed by a free community celebration in the city park next door, with music, food, children’s activities, and a student art exhibit. All are welcome.
Chatfield College is a private, Catholic college with two campuses, one in Over-the-Rhine and the other in rural St. Martin, OH, offering students from two very different areas to study for a two-year Associate’s Degree in liberal arts. An open enrollment college, it accepts students with high school diplomas or GEDs. The school is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, students can attend the Findlay Market campus and transfer credits to any accredited four-year college.
For more information about Chatfield College, visit the website, at www.chatfield.edu,or firstname.lastname@example.org. For information about the groundbreaking ceremony, call call 513-875-3344, ext. 124.
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