Friday, June 27, 2008

Hale Justis sale approved

Cincinnati City Council has approved unanimously the sale of the Hale Justis Lofts, which could lead to more homeownership units along Central Parkway.

The passed ordinance allows the City to sell the property at to Hale Justis, LLC (City Center Properties) for $50,200, the negotiated sale price.

In 1999, the two parties entered into a lease agreement for the developers to convert the former pharmaceutical wholesaling building into 30 apartment units, with the understanding that it would eventually be turned into condominiums.

The City's main concern with the sale is that adequate parking be made available for future homeowners.

To help achieve this goal - and to keep the developer from quickly selling the discounted land for a profit - the agreement requires Hale Justis, LLC to treat both the building and the adjacent Jackson Street parking lot as one property.

If the property is split and the developer sells the parking lot within the next three years, any proceeds of the sale must be shared with the City.

Following those three years, a prospective buyer, Germania, LLC, will be granted a right of first refusal for the lot through the year 2051.

Germania, LLC had submitted to the City an unsolicited offer of $140,000 to buy the parking lot.

They have since threatened a possible taxpayer action, claiming that their offer should have triggered the "right of first refusal" clause in the lease agreement.

The City's Law Department says that the City's position is legally defensible because Germania, LLC did not make an offer on the whole property, but only a portion of it.

City Manager Milton Dohoney Jr. had argued against including the clause the ordinance, saying that it may hinder any future plans to develop the property.

Photo credit: Hale Justis Lofts

Previous reading on BC:
Hale Justis could go condo (5/29/08)



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