Dayton Mall owner, ex-Austin Landing head part of sports, convention center study

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

New premium theater with gourmet food now open at Austin Landing

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Miami Twp. is working with the Dayton Mall owner and the former manager of Austin Landing on the potential for developing convention and sports facilities.

Records show the Washington Prime Group Inc. and Dillin LLC “have separately agreed to partner with” the Miami Twp. Community Improvement Corp., which “desires to evaluate the market feasibility of certain convention and sports facilities within” the township.

That language is part of a resolution approved by the township’s CIC for an agreement with HVS Convention, Sports & Entertainment Consulting of Chicago.

The document also allows the CIC to execute “cost share agreements” with Washington Prime and Dillin LLC for HVS’s proposal.

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HVS seeks to “provide a feasibility analysis for two potential developments: a conference center at the Austin West development” and “a multipurpose events venue at the Dayton Mall,” according to township documents obtained by the Dayton Daily News through a public records request.

Washington Prime Group owns the Dayton Mall, as well as The Mall at Fairfield Commons in Beavercreek.

Austin West is a common name for a 40-acre site owned by the township near Austin Landing, formerly managed by Larry Dillin, president of Dillin LLC.

For Austin West, HVS “completed a feasibility study for a 120-room, select service hotel at the site,” an April letter to the township states.

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“A private developer approached the township and proposed a full-service hotel with an attached conference center at the site,” according to the letter. “Another set of private developers are considering a multipurpose events venue (sports, entertainment and meetings) at the Dayton Mall.”

Miami Twp. officials contacted for this article declined to comment or did not respond to inquiries. Washington Prime Group referenced the vacant Elder-Beerman site when asked about a study with township.

“Washington Prime Group and Miami Township continue to work closely to identify and evaluate opportunities to improve Dayton Mall,” Matt Jurkowitz, vice president of development for Washington Prime, said in a statement.

“This vitally important asset continues to receive priority attention as planning continues relative to the repositioning of the former Elder-Beerman building and parcel,” Jurkowitz said.

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In 2018, Elder-Beerman closed its Dayton Mall site, in addition to locations in Huber Heights and at The Mall at Fairfield Commons.

Washington Prime Group bought the 220,000-square-foot Dayton Mall space for $3.6 million in a deal that included 15 acres, the Dayton Daily News reported in December 2019.

Redevelopment of the Dayton Mall area began several years ago when Miami Twp. began developing a master plan of the area. The plan adopted in 2015 calls for more than $200 million in investments.

Dillin LLC last year had an exclusive agreement with the township to market the Austin West site.

Dillin outlined a $120 million proposal that called for a mixed use development more dense than Austin Landing.

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It included restaurants, office space, residential units, a hotel, a park, a “meeting/events center” with buildings as high as eight stories or more.

Dillin was given an extension on the time frame for the agreement, but it has expired, Miami Twp. Trustee John Morris, president of the township’s CIC, has said.

Records show research by HVS would take about 10 weeks, costing about $117,000, plus $18,500 for optional work.

Documents do not indicate how parties will share costs, but do state Washington Prime Group and Dillin LLC would be responsible for “a portion of the expenses outlined in the HVS proposal.”

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