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CINCINNATI - The City of Cincinnati is providing $15 million to build the Kroger Co. a new parking garage, as part of an agreement with the retailer to keep its headquarters downtown.
The deal, announced earlier this month, calls for building an 850- to 1,000 space parking garage at the corner of Vine Street and Central Parkway, near company headquarters. Kroger now leases 14 lots with 1,038 parking spaces, but more than 400 of those spaces could be eliminated within two years because of private development and a new school in the area.
Kroger said if it couldn't find parking it would move its headquarters to either the suburbs or another state. Kroger currently employs 1,186 employees downtown, with an average salary of $90,000, and plans to add 275 more jobs over the next seven years, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. In addition, the company's presence has prompted other firms, such as Dunnhumby USA, a London-based marketing and data analysis firm to locate downtown.
The city would own and operate the garage, with Kroger contributing annual payments of $510,000 for maintenance and debt, in exchange for 850 spaces, which is roughly how much Kroger and its employees now spend on parking.