Vacant buildings in Ludlow/Newport get new life from urban revitalization grants

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Duke Energy and the Catalytic Fund distributed grants to restore three properties, one in Ludlow and two in Newport.

The program, launched in 2011, has distributed over $3.3 million to more than 100 grantees across Greater Cincinnati. The grants typically provide funding for pre-development costs and serve as catalysts for further economic development in the urban core.

The Catalytic Fund, which guides real estate projects in the Northern Kentucky river cities of Dayton, Bellevue, Newport, Ludlow, and Covington secured the Urban Revitalization Grant funding of $20,000 for each of the three Northern Kentucky projects.

Grant Recipients:

  • 401 Elm – Located at 401 Elm St. in Ludlow, the project will feature the redevelopment of two buildings by Challis and Lauren Hodge, the owners of Taste on Elm gourmet deli and Conserva, a wine and tapas bar. They will renovate the historic two-story corner commercial storefront building to include dining and event rental spaces, while a garage structure to the rear will be outfitted with a full commercial restaurant kitchen.
  • 337 W. 11th – This project will restore a blighted, vacant historic corner commercial building in Newport’s Buena Vista neighborhood. Newport resident, real estate, and construction professional Luke Woerner will develop the project. Woerner will renovate the building to restore the original commercial storefront for a new small business and significantly update two residential units.
  • Monmouth Street Mercantile – The project will transform a vacant historic building located at 722-24 Monmouth St. into a community hub in Newport’s downtown business district. The Baker’s Table Bakery and The Baker’s Table restaurant owners, Dave Willocks and Wendy Braun, will develop, own, and operate the project, bringing a multifaceted retail business offering lifestyle products, home decor, and wellness brands.
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