State of City: Love and hardship in Dayton

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley ends her race for governor. Photo by Jim Otte.

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Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley ends her race for governor. Photo by Jim Otte.

It’s Valentine’s Day, and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley during the State of the City address this morning sought to highlight some of the development successes and investments she loves, while acknowledging some formidable challenges, including the opioid crisis and the closing of Good Samaritan Hospital.

During a speech at City Hall, Whaley said the housing market continues to rebound from the Great Recession and downtown and surrounding neighborhoods are some of the hottest areas in the region.

Some major projects completed last year included Dayton Children’s new patient tower, a 570,000-square-foot facility at the Dayton International Airport, the $64 million downtown Dayton Metro Library and new housing, including the Declo Lofts, she said.

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The city enhanced some of its basic services, using funding from its income tax hike, which allowed the city to pave more than 60 lane miles of residential streets last year — the most in 40 years, she said.

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Whaley said the city has started offering high-quality preschool to every 4-year-old in the city. She said the relationship between the city and Dayton Board of Education is the strongest in her 12 years on the city commission.

But Whaley said the announcement that Good Sam is closing was “one of the toughest days I have had as mayor.” She said the closure will impact access to health care for thousands of residents, and she’s concerned about the economic consequences.

She said the opioid crisis continues to drain public safety resources and has hit this community harder than anywhere else in the nation.

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