Construction on track for newest downtown office tower

CareSource is on target to open its new downtown Dayton campus in the spring of 2019, starting construction recently on what will be the first newly constructed office tower in downtown Dayton in a decade.

The six-story CareSource Center City is the first newly constructed downtown office project underway since the nonprofit — a fast growing Medicaid managed care company — broke ground on its Main Street headquarters in 2007.

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The building, with construction led by Danis, will be at the site of the former Patterson Co-op High School on the 100 block of East First Street. It will have the space to house 800 employees from CareSource, have a similar design to its headquarters and is intended create a walkable, campus like environment for its employees.

The new office tower will neighbor the new main branch of the Dayton Metro Library and will help bridge the Main Street business corridor with the residential neighborhood just east, which includes Cooper Place, Cooper Lofts, Patterson Place, the Ice Lofts and the Litehouse homes.

It was approved by the Dayton Board of Zoning Appeals this spring.

CareSource, which now has about 2,000 employees in downtown Dayton, has been rapidly growing in recent years into a nonprofit with more than $7 billion in revenue and members in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia and now Georgia, which it just expanded into this year.

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Some contributers to its growth have been the expansion of Medicaid in Ohio in 2014 and CareSource’s continued expansion of private health plans it sells through Affordable Care Act marketplaces.

This year, CareSource expanded into nine Ohio counties and four Indiana counties that otherwise wouldn’t have had an option for buying health plans through the ACA marketplaces. This includes expanding into Paulding County, marking the last county in the U.S. getting an ACA health plan option for 2018.

The insurer has become a major employer in Dayton, anchoring downtown with its employment base. It struck a deal with the Ohio Tax Credit Authority late last year to increase its job-creation commitment to 1,920 jobs by 2019 — including current positions being filled and the new jobs promised — raising the company's annual payroll in Dayton to more than $129 million.

Along with its 230 N. Main St. headquarters, CareSource bought a building it had been leasing called Ballpark Village, across from Fifth Third Field.

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