Monday, February 11, 2013

Former Columbia Tusculum movie theater becoming retail, apartments

A former movie theater in Columbia Tusculum will see new life as retail and apartments, thanks to a Community Reinvestment Area tax exemption agreement approved by City Council on Feb. 6.

Developers Ted and Kent Hardman are renovating the vacant Jackson Building at 4021 Eastern Avenue into seven apartment units and 2,000 square feet of commercial space. The commercial space, which will occupy the former Jackson Theater lobby, will have an 11-station hair salon as its tenant.

The project cost is $1.2 million. The 12-year tax exemption will reduce the development's property tax liability by $320,160 over the life of the agreement.

Construction is expected to be completed by this summer.

Built as the Carrel Theater and opened in 1915, the theater was renamed for Jerome Jackson, a former early nickelodeon operator who helped start a film distribution business for nickel houses in the Cincinnati region. Jackson later became manager of Downtown's Taft Theatre and was part of the Lyric Theater's ownership group.

Over the past three years, the Hardmans have renovated, own, and manage buildings at 4017 Allston Street in Oakley, at 5824 Ridge Avenue and 6033 Montgomery Road in Pleasant Ridge, and 6842 Montgomery Road in Silverton.