Newport, KY

Improvements for Newport on the Levee Despite the Pandemic

Anita Durairaj

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I clearly remember a brand new Newport on the Levee when it first opened up in 2001. I was a student at the University of Cincinnati and a bunch of us would drive in over from Cincinnati into Kentucky just to take stock of the new commercial complex.

It was a brand spanking new entertainment center and we had a lot of fun taking in a movie (the Harry Potter movies were huge back then), perusing the Claire's store for cheap trinkets, dining at some of the restaurants (my favorite was Dewey’s Pizza) and enjoying the Cincinnati skyline and river view from the Barnes and Noble bookstore. Plus don’t forget the aquarium. This was a happening place in the early-mid 2000s.

I graduated and then left Cincinnati for a new job and life. Fifteen years later, I was back in Newport for another new job. My first stop was the Newport on the Levee.

It still seemed like a great place but I was disappointed to see that the place looked a little run down and some of the shine had rubbed off. It looked like there were only a few stores. Besides, there weren’t many people walking around either. It had become like a little ghost town. However, the views of the skyline and river were still great.

I don’t know why a place with so much potential was starting to lose its luster? However, there is hope for the Newport on the Levee despite the current pandemic. 

Improvements to be Made

According to the River City News, the Newport on the Levee is scheduled to have a revolving retail market by the summer of 2021.

The revolving retail market will involve a dozen local vendors with short and long-term leases. There will also be 4 local businesses that will open up their stores in the Gallery Building of the Newport on the Levee.

The best part of this concept is that local businesses instead of mega-chain stores are being encouraged to set up shop. This will bring in a different sort of energy and investment to the area. It is certain that local businesses will be more invested in ensuring retail success in the area.

The Gallery Building has undergone renovations and it is scheduled to be open to the public on May 1. There are many other renovations planned that should bring back the shine to the Newport on the Levee. These include repainting, new signage, and lighting, as well as other upgrades.

The company behind all these improvements is a local real estate firm called North American Properties (NAP). On their website, the Newport on the Levee is already listed as one of their projects under development. 

Their site shows the details of the project,

380,000+ sq.ft. leasable gross area
54,263 sq. ft. of creative office
2,245 parking spaces

One unique aspect of management by North American Properties is that they will apply for an Entertainment Destination License so that people can walk around with adult beverages while watching the music or fireworks. 

Here are some of the new businesses that will be added to the area:

  • Kon-Tiki on the Levee
  • The View at Shires’ Garden
  • The Little Spoon Bakery and Cafe
  • Bon Mi Street
  • Leaf and Limb
  • Legion Logistics

Finally

It will be most interesting to see the changes take place at the Newport on the Levee. It will continue to remain a hot-spot destination for entertainment in Northern Kentucky. The changes will be welcomed in the area especially in light of the pandemic where positive news is most needed. Surely, this will bring in more visitors to Newport, Kentucky, and revive its economy.

Sources: The River City News, WLWT5, North American Properties

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