Fire Blocks District apartments, businesses to open later this year

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The developer for the Fire Blocks District in downtown Dayton says new apartments and businesses are set to open later this year.

The first phase of the project will bring nearly 100 new apartments to the neighborhood, according to the developer, in addition to restaurants and office space.

The project remains on schedule, and the new apartments are expected to open in December, said Eric VanZwieten of The Windsor Companies, the developer on the project.

Between 50 and 100 people are working at a time to get the new apartments and businesses finished on schedule, VanZwieten said.

“Aside from being a first-time business owner, I wanted to be part of a movement in Dayton,” said Justin Mohler, who is getting ready to open his bakery cafe, Salt Block Biscuit Company, in the Fire Blocks District early next year.

The first phase of the redevelopment project consists of three buildings on East Third Street and costs about $35 million, VanZwieten said.

“It’s a historically significant building, so everything we do has to fit into, kind of, the history of the building,” he said.

Several bars and restaurants have signed on, about half the available office space has been filled and more than 200 people have joined a list of prospective tenants, VanZwieten said. That’s more than twice the number of residential units available.

“It’s going to be pretty lively,” he said. “There’s going to be a couple of hundred people living in the lofts, all kinds of different restaurants, bars and cafes.”

Mohler told 2 NEWS he is optimistic about the potential boost for the Dayton economy.

“From what I’ve seen the past year, I can’t believe how much Dayton’s expanded,” he said.

The entire Fire Blocks project will involve another two phases, with several more buildings to be renovated, VanZwieten said. The timelines for those parts of the project are still to be determined, he added.

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