Grant presentation. From left are Lincoln Heights Council Member Laverne Mitchell, Hamilton County Commissioner Denise Driehaus, Commission President Stephanie Summerow Dumas, Lincoln Heights Mayor Ruby Kinsey-Mumphrey, Lincoln Heights Council Member Linda Childs-Jeter, Commission Commission Vice President Alicia Reece, and Lincoln Heights Council Member Tonya Key. Photo provided

‘Forgotten Village’s turnaround story is happening now’ – Commission President Stephanie Summerow Dumas

By Bridget Doherty

Hamilton County Commission 

Hamilton County Commissioners announce nearly $1 million is being awarded to the Village of Lincoln Heights to fund transformational improvements to drive economic development in the heart of the Village. Improvements to Memorial Field, the demolition and remediation of the long-forgotten high school and various critical street upgrades will occur thanks to the County’s Community Impact Grant.

“Lincoln Heights is making foundational changes with this grant,” said Commission President Stephanie Summerow Dumas. “Once considered a forgotten village, Lincoln Heights is writing a new story – one of a thriving community with a rich history.”

“This is more than cleaning up a ball field, tearing down a vacant building and fixing some streets. We are fixing the decades of disinvestment and abandonment,” said Commission Vice President Alicia Reece. “Memorial Field will once again shine as the place where the community comes together to compete and celebrate.”

“This impact grant is meant to catalyze redevelopment and build community,” said Commissioner Denise Driehaus. “Lincoln Heights is the perfect place to initiate this new way of investing county dollars to help neighborhoods thrive.”

“We are thankful for the opportunity afforded to The Village of Lincoln Heights,” said Mayor Ruby Kinsey-Mumphrey. “This grant provides a significant impact to our community and improves our efforts to create more economic development, street improvements and gathering places as we move forward with positive results for the next generation.”

New in 2022, the Hamilton County Community Impact Grant is only opened to eight limited-capacity communities, meaning they don’t have the staff support to administer additional community revitalization projects. The idea behind the grant is to concentrate a variety of resources in a specific community over a short period of time to complete high-impact community revitalization projects. 

The eight eligible communities include Addyston, Arlington Heights, Cheviot, Golf Manor, Elmwood Place, Lincoln Heights, Lockland, and Mt. Healthy.

Lincoln Heights was awarded $975,000 to administer the following:

  • $687,300 for road repair projects on Adams, Jackson, Simmons, and Behles Streets including curbs, sidewalks, and sewer repair.
  • $104,000 (plus another $378,948 in previously awarded County CDBG) for Memorial Field to make it ADA accessible, replace playground equipment, tables, benches, and add landscaping, signage, walking paths and a concession stand.
  • $183,700 for the demolition and remediation of 1100 Lindy Avenue, home to the vacant Lincoln Heights High School.

The Village intends to leverage $3.1 million in additional local/state/private funding for an overall investment in the Village of $4.4 million.

The Village of Lincoln Heights is strategically located along I-75 approximately 18 miles from the City of Cincinnati. Incorporated in 1946 and home to some 3,200 residents, the Village was the first African American self-governing community north of the Mason-Dixon line. Today, the Village is in the midst of an aggressive revitalization effort aimed at improving resident services and infrastructure and attracting and retaining residents and businesses.

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