Elevated Dayton walkway demolition work to begin

Project expected to cost about $500,000.

A 1970s-era relic in downtown Dayton soon will be history — the elevated pedestrian walkway from a city-owned parking garage to what used to be the Elder-Beerman Department store and to Courthouse Square.

If you want to preserve the memory, you have this week to take photos because starting Monday, Feb. 2, workers from O’Rourke Wrecking Company of Cincinnati will begin dismantling the deteriorating enclosed walkway. They’ll start with the Courthouse Square portion that includes a staircase and elevator shaft.

The reason? The walkway just isn’t being used much anymore, and it’s in pretty poor shape, too.

The job will cost $495,000 and is being paid for by the city, which owns the walkway.

Ludlow Street will be closed to traffic over a number of weekends to accommodate the work, but it’s unclear how many weekends will be required, said Steve Finke, Dayton’s city engineer. He’s hoping it goes quickly. The wrecker has up to 90 days to finish the job. During the work week, at least one lane on Ludlow Street will remain open.

The walkway at one time featured a direct entry into Elder-Beerman. The building is now the home to CVS and the Area Agency on Aging.

Plywood now covers the entrance to the staircase in Courthouse Square. The adjacent elevator is closed off by a metal gate and padlock. A stairwell from the street level to the Leigh Garage elevator will continue to be in use after the demolition.

The Dayton Regional Transit Authority will begin rerouting buses for the demolition. Routes 5, 7 and 8 will reroute to Main Street between Monument and Third streets. Temporary bus stops will be located on southbound Main Street at First Street at the existing shelter and at Third Street midblock at the cross walk light. Regular service for Routes 12 and 43 will continue on Ludlow Street.

The routes may need to move to Main Street intermittently to allow for crane use, RTA said.

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