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Downtown Dayton Riverfront Project Gets Green Light

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The proposed Water Street development in downtown Dayton is one step closer to reality. The Dayton Plan Commission gave approval to the Water Street Project.  The private redevelopment effort would span almost the whole stretch of riverfront from Riverscape Park to Tech Town. Support for the $36 million effort was overwhelming at Tuesday night’s meeting.

"The developer has money, has experience, knows what he’s doing, he’s not coming saying give me money, I’ll build it, he’s bringing money from Columbus to here," says Sandy Mendelson, a downtown businessman.

The plan would include 360 new housing units, and a four-story office building with a restaurant.

"This is our neighborhood, this is what 20 years of my life have been about, living downtown and enjoying downtown, and all of the growth that I wanted to see is materializing," says Ron Lee with the Downtown Priority Board.

The support comes despite a vacancy rate of around 30 percent for downtown offices. But city planners say Water Street could be more competitive than some older buildings. The Water Street development will likely go to the City Commission for approval within weeks.