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Board Takes First Step in Potential Move of College of Law to ‘The Banks’


UC’s Board of Trustees took its first action Tuesday on a possible relocation of the university’s College of Law and other university facilities to the Downtown riverfront development known as The Banks.

Date: 2/2/2016 12:00:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824

UC ingot   During the Feb. 2 Board of Trustees meeting, the board approved a resolution authorizing UC to enter into formal discussions to “fully pursue and evaluate” a potential move of selected academic facilities, including the University of Cincinnati ’s College of Law, to the downtown riverfront development known as The Banks.

The resolution authorizes university discussions with the City-County Joint Banks Steering Committee (JBSC), the master developer, Carter USA, and designated staff from the City and County.

It also authorizes the establishment of a University Banks Working Group (UBWG), to be appointed and led by President Santa J. Ono and to be advised and assisted by the chair of the board’s Finance and Administration Committee, Thomas D. Cassady, and the chair of the board’s Real Estate Subcommittee, William “Wym” C. Portman III.

The conditions and contingencies outlined in the resolution include:
  • Reaching satisfactory final terms, design and use agreements between UC, the City and the County, as recommended by the JBSC, within 180 days of the resolution.
  • Raising a minimum of $25 million on behalf of the College of Law in private contributions and/or project specific funding from other public or private sources.
  • Such other terms and conditions to be determined by the University Banks Working Group.
  • Final approval by the UC Board of Trustees.

“The opportunity to establish something so distinctive and dynamic in the heart of the city comes only once in a few generations,” said Thomas H. Humes, UC’s outgoing Board Chairman. “It brings together  three historic institutions, the university, the city and the county in a way that will create new synergy. It’s very appropriate that it would be anchored by our historic College of Law and potentially include other university programs and assets. We think this would be a truly special addition to The Banks and offer some exciting accelerated learning opportunities, not only for our students but also our entire community.” 

“I am excited about the bold vision of a UC presence on The Banks, and I look forward to the efforts of the working group that will evaluate what’s going to be possible,” said UC President Santa J. Ono. “As an urban-serving university, our connection with Cincinnati is part of our DNA and a UC presence downtown would enhance the strong relationships between our university, the city and the county.”

For several years the College of Law has discussed the possibility of renovating or building a new structure.

“We look forward to working with the University and the Board of Trustees as we move forward with these plans,” said College of Law Dean Jennifer Bard. “The current law school building, although historic, is in need of substantial renovation, and this offers a wonderful opportunity to create the space our faculty, staff and students need to continue our mission to educate and inspire leaders who pursue justice and advance the role of law in society.”

ABOUT THE COLLEGE OF LAW
Established in 1833, the University of Cincinnati College of Law is the first law school west of the Alleghenies and the fourth-oldest continuously operating law school in the country. When it began as the Cincinnati Law School with 17 students, it was located above a downtown office.

OTHER NEWS FROM TODAY’S BOARD OF TRUSTEE’S MEETING

Robert E. Richardson Jr. Elected Chair of UC Trustees
UC alumnus Robert E. Richardson Jr., who once served as the university’s Student Body President, will serve as the next Chair of the University of Cincinnati Board of Trustees. At age 37, he will be the youngest Board chair in the university’s history.

The board has now approved a total of $60 million for the completion of all design and construction required for the demolition of Wherry Hall and construction of a new Health Sciences Building on the East, Uptown Campus. (This $60 million includes $5 million previously approved for this project.)
Previous news related to these projects: http://healthnews.uc.edu/news/?/25028/

The approval of $6 million (in addition to $16 million previously approved) to renovate the university’s Campus Services Building—originally a 1929 Sears, Roebuck and Co. department store—into a research accelerator facility. The building is expected to be a hub of entrepreneurial innovation for the university by providing space for startup companies born of UC-developed technologies.
Previous news related to this project: http://healthnews.uc.edu/news/?/25794/