Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Voting Starts For Downtown Cincinnati's Most Talked About Development

Let the voting begin! The final stage of public input has begun on the naming of Downtown Cincinnati's much anticipated riverfront redevelopment project in and around the stadia and the Underground Railroad Freedom Center. Up to now, it's been known as The Banks, and that is one of the four choices on which the public can vote beginning at noon today.

I had the pleasure to be on a marketing panel recently to streamline the process for naming the project. I know that the name of the product or development is the first and most important step in creating its identity, which is why the developers are taking the time and energy to get it right.

People are passionate about this subject and the name submission, panel and voting processes helps give Cincinnati a say and ownership of the project. The panel process provided the opportunity for us to share our thoughts and ideas and bring our expertise to the table. We were able to reach consensus on great additional names that we believe represent the broader input from citizen submissions and what will work best for the development. Below is the news release about the final voting process.


Residents Asked for Final Vote on Banks Renaming
Developers Include Residents’ Suggestions

Cincinnati, OH (April 14, 2009) – The Master Development Team of Carter and The Dawson Company announced that the final public voting process began today at 12 a.m. to determine the name for the up-to-$1 billion mixed-use development on the banks of the Ohio River.

The choices are:
1. North Shore
2. Roebling Point
3. The River District
4. The Banks

“This development belongs to the people of Cincinnati and Hamilton County,” said Malloy Peterson, director of marketing at Carter. “We want their input to help us choose the best possible name for a development that has come to mean so much to the community.”

Residents interested in defining a piece of Cincinnati may vote at www.carterdawson.com. The survey will be live for one week, closing Monday, April 20 at 11:59 p.m. The final result will be available for public viewing and announced Tuesday, April 21.

Members of the development team evaluated the number of votes that each of the four given names received and reviewed more than 650 online submissions from the first round of voting. Many write-ins appeared multiple times or had similar themes, which allowed the team to divide the suggestions into categories. Some write-ins used the opportunity to shorten their favorite name, Riverfront District, to The River District. Other popular entries focused on the development’s location on the river, the Roebling Suspension Bridge and Cincinnati’s location on the “north shore” of the Ohio River.

The team organized a panel of some of Cincinnati’s top marketing, branding and communications experts from business, economic development, tourism and young professionals groups to review the most common submissions and categories from the write-ins. The panel discussed connotations of the submitted names, their favorites and the shortened version of one of the top vote-getters from the previous survey – The River District. After much discussion, the 11-person panel put it to a vote to determine names that would be added to The Banks and The River District.

“This is more than just a new development to the people of this region,” said Tamara Kimble, vice president of strategic marketing & external affairs at The Dawson Company. “This represents the region’s progress and promise for future opportunity, and we need a name that the people can get behind.”

Known as The Banks since its inception, the development is a joint City of Cincinnati, Hamilton County, Carter, Dawson project. Once completed, The Banks will be Cincinnati’s largest single, mixed-use development and be composed of a dynamic blend of residential, office, hotel and retail components. Phase 1A of the riverfront development is under construction and will include a revised street grid, parking facility, a minimum of 300 apartments and 70,000 square feet of retail.

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