Old newspaper site for sale, city works to buy rest of property

The city of Dayton is still working to finalize the purchase of most of the former Dayton Daily News site from demolition contractor Steve R Rauch Inc.

However, the historic newspaper building at the corner of Ludlow and Fourth streets has been listed online for sale for $950,000.

The city is expected to close on the sale of most of the Dayton Daily News property very soon, possibly in the next several days.

“We’re supposed to close on the other piece of the property just north of it with the city, ” said Steve Rauch, owner of the demolition contracting firm. “It’s supposed to happen in the next couple of days.”

Steve R Rauch took ownership of the downtown property in January after suing its former owner, Student Suites.

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City staff plan to issue a request for qualifications to find a firm to develop the vacant property, in the hopes of creating new uses that enhance and benefit the rehab of the Dayton Arcade, which is located across the street.

“Once we take ownership, we’ll be releasing the RFQ,” said Aaron Sorrell, Dayton’s director of planning and community development last month.

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But the city did not buy the historic newspaper building, which is now up on the market.

Missouri firm Student Suites planned to create housing aimed at the student market at the former Dayton Daily News site.

But the project stalled and demolition firm Steve R Rauch sued the company for unpaid demolition bills.

Steve Rauch, owner of the contracting firm, reached a settlement with Student Suites in which he was deeded the site.

The city of Dayton last year agreed to pay $295,000 to Rauch to finish demolition work at the old newspaper site, turning a large hole in the ground into a grassy lot.

Last year, Dayton commissioners authorized spending about $450,000 to purchase most of the former Dayton Daily News site. The purchase did not include the still-standing historic newspaper building at the corner of Fourth and Ludlow streets.

RELATED: City looks to buy part of former DDN site

That property is now listed for sale online. Berkshire Hathaway says the property is 18,000 square feet.

Rauch originally said he wanted to hang onto the historic structure but did not announce definite plans for it. At one point, he said he would consider donating it to Dayton History.

But on Monday, Rauch said he would have sold it to the city but they did not want it.

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