$22 million mixed-use project, with microbrewery, coming to NKY

$22 million mixed-use project, with microbrewery, coming to NKY


A Northern Kentucky restaurateur and developer plans to break ground this summer on a mixed-use project in southern Kenton County.

Gary Holland, CEO of Taylor Mill-based One Holland, plans to purchase and develop about 30 acres of land at the northeast corner of state Routes 16 and 17 in Independence. The land will be developed into the Downs of Nicholson, which will include two restaurants, a microbrewery and taproom, and 85 rental patio homes. The project is expected to be a total investment of $22 million.

Holland, who grew up in Independence, has driven by the site for years. He has thought about what he could bring to the site that would be special for the community.

After buying the Greyhound Tavern, Holland thought it would be great to have a similar restaurant in southern Kenton County.

“I know that I am blessed because it just sat there for so long,” Holland told me. “I’m getting to buy this and make it something where the whole city can appreciate it.”

Holland is calling the project the Downs of Nicholson because this area of Kenton County is known as Nicholson. And the development will look like a Lexington horse farm, complete with four-board white fences. The microbrewery will be designed to look like a barn. The sit-down restaurant will be designed to resemble a nice home that would be found on a horse farm.

“You’re going to drive by it and say, ‘Wow, this is beautiful,’” Holland said.

The Downs of Nicholson will include 85 patio homes with a mix of two-bedroom and three-bedroom units. The patio homes will have attached two-car garages and separate access.

The patio homes will be rental units, with One Holland planning to own and manage them. Holland said pricing for the patio homes has not been finalized yet.

Holland has not selected a general contractor for the patio homes, but said a number of builders have expressed interest in this portion of the project. He said Independence has a lack of single-floor living product available and many residents want to stay in the city.

“My phone has been ringing off the hook from builders who want to build these patio homes,” he said.

The patio homes at the Downs of Nicholson will have a clubhouse with fitness center, swimming pool, event rental room and leasing office.

The commercial portion of the development will include a quick-service restaurant with a drive-thru, a 5,000-square-foot convenience store market with gas pumps, the brewery, and a sit-down restaurant.

The convenience store would be like a mini-super market, Holland said. It would be a place for people to grab a few items instead of making a full grocery shopping trip.

The restaurant, which will be called Limestone, will have some similarities to the Greyhound Tavern, but it will have its own feel, Holland said. It will have a bourbon bar and large outdoor dining patio area.

The microbrewery will be owned by a group of people Holland went to high school with from Independence. It is planned to be called the Sons of Independence. Some members of the group are brewers and are already brewing batches to determine their lineup.

The brewery will be about 7,000 square feet, with 4,000 square feet for the tap room and 3,000 square feet for brewing operations, plus a basement. Both the brewery and Limestone will have a lake as their backyard. Holland plans to have live music and extensive patio seating for both.

Amanda WilliamsDrew Holland and Dave Meenach are all part of the One Holland team working on the project. Bayer Becker is the civil engineer for the Downs at Nicholson. Covington-based AGI is the architect for the development. Holland has number of banks interested in financing the development.

Holland has the land under contract and is scheduled to close on March 5. If all goes as planned with planning and zoning, Holland expects to break ground this summer and be wrapped up by the summer or fall of 2023.