Downtown Dayton’s Water Street District: What is it, and why is it growing?

The Water Street District has helped make downtown one of the hottest destinations and places to live in the region.

The area was in the news recently with the announcement that nearly 200 new apartments and 134 Hotels rooms will open there by late-February or mid-March.

Here are some things to know about the area:

Where is it?

The Water Street District is in downtown Dayton along the banks of the Great Miami and Mad rivers, adjacent to Riverscape MetroPark and spreading out into the general area around Day Air Ballpark.

Planned by the city of Dayton

City officials have been pushing for development in the Water Street area for years, dating back well past a Ballpark Village concept that was announced in 2006 but never moved forward.

A decade ago the Water Street area was home to mainly manufacturing and industrial operations. The city of Dayton bought land for the site in 2013 as part of the city’s urban design plan.

The Water Street District project was formed to help the city of Dayton attract and retain quality jobs.

Who is developing it?

Columbus-based Crawford Hoying Development Partners and Dayton-based Woodard Development are the main developers in the Water Street District.

Investment in the district has exceeded $100 million and shows no signs of slowing.

Credit: Cory Frolik

Credit: Cory Frolik

Early progress

The Water Street District’s first project was an office building, which had its ribbon cutting in April 2015. That building also has first floor amenities including a fitness center (Snap Fitness), and anchor tenant (PNC Bank)

PNC’s downtown headquarters now occupies the upper two floors of the 50,000-square-foot building, located at 312 N Patterson Blvd.

What is there now?

Water Street has hundreds of apartments, and hundreds more are opening soon. Living options include Centerfield Flats and the Water Street Flats apartments. The Monument and the Sutton apartments are on schedule to open soon.

A couple of hotels provide the downtown area with new places to stay. They are the Fairfield Inn and Suites and the soon to open AC Hotel by Marriott.

The Water Street District has also attracted a slew of bars and restaurants, including the Dayton Beer Company, Moeller Brew Barn, Lock 27, Dayton Barrel Works, Warped Wing Brewery, Tender Mercy bar, Local Cantina, Flyboys Deli and more.

Madison on First, a mixed-use building next to the new AC Hotel, offers 15,000 square feet of ground floor retail and restaurant space for Moeller Brew Barn and 5,700 square feet of office space for construction management company Brackett Builders Inc.

Ongoing projects

Crawford Hoying and Woodard Development also are partners on the Delco project, which is the conversion of the massive Mendelsons liquidation outlet into new housing, offices, commercial spaces and a parking garage.

The Delco, which is next door to the AC Hotel, will have about 160 luxury apartments, nearly 500 parking spaces and roughly 80,000 square feet of office space and 18,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.

The project is expected to be completed in spring of 2024.