Planned Dayton boutique hotel, loft apartments seek state tax credits

Developers are seeking tax credits to pay for a renovation of the Barclay building, turning it into a branded boutique hotel. CORY FROLIK

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Developers are seeking tax credits to pay for a renovation of the Barclay building, turning it into a branded boutique hotel. CORY FROLIK

A proposed boutique hotel, loft apartment building and Century Bar’s new home plan to go after about $5.8 million in highly competitive state historic tax incentives.

One project would bring a hotel product downtown that development leaders for years have said is sorely lacking.

The other pair of projects would strengthen sections of the urban center that have not seen the kinds of investment that have transformed Webster Station and the northeastern quadrant of downtown.

Ohio historic preservation tax credits have helped create hundreds of new apartments in Dayton as well as some popular eating, dining and entertainment destinations.

MORE: Downtown Dayton building sold to hotel developer

But some Dayton projects that have won tax credit awards flopped, and the incentives were returned to the state.

The new owners of the Barclay building at 137 N. Main St. want to turn the property into a “branded boutique hotel.”

Boutique hotels typically have a smaller number of rooms than most hotels and are in unique locations while offering upscale accommodations.

First Barclay LLC in October purchased the 10-story building for $750,000. The building was anchored by Miller-Valentine Group, a large local firm that offers construction, development, brokerage and property management services.

The Barclay developers have told the state they intend to apply for $4.75 million in state historic preservation tax incentives for the renovation project. First Barclay is a joint partnership of Columbus-based Lawyers Development Corp. and Chicago-based First Hospitality Group.

The new downtown Dayton hotel is expected to have 118 rooms, a first-floor restaurant, two meeting rooms and a fitness center, said David Duncan, president of First Hospitality Group.

The interior of the building will be gutted and rebuilt, and new mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems will be installed, he said.

The project will put in new main entry doors and new storefront windows on the first floor. The renovation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of this year.

Lawyers Development Corp. and First Hospitality Group worked together on a boutique hotel called Hotel LeVeque in Columbus, which is part of Marriott Hotels Autograph Collection.

The Hotel LeVeque says it blends historic and elegant contemporary designs and sophisticated and thoughtful decor and technology. The hotel, located in one of Columbus’ most recognizable downtown buildings, has event space and an onsite French brasserie and bar.

MORE: Developers scoop up downtown Dayton properties

Columbus-based Windsor Companies, which is developing the Fire Blocks District, wants to rehab the long vacant Graphic Arts building at 221 S. Ludlow St.

The firm plans to apply for $900,000 in state tax credits to turn the five-story building into new loft apartments and first-floor retail and commercial space, said Eric VanZwieten, head of marketing with Columbus-based Windsor Companies.

The Graphic Arts building is in the southwest section of downtown, which has a significant number of empty commercial buildings. But there’s hope for renewal, thanks to nearby projects like the Levitt Pavilion Dayton, which opened about a block away at South Main and Fifth streets.

A Columbus firm purchased a building on the first block of West Fifth Street, around the corner from the Graphic Arts building, with plans to rehab and reuse. The owners of the empty Fidelity building at the corner of West Fifth and South Main street also won more than $4.1 million in state tax incentives to help with a renovation project.

Windsor already is working to rehab two buildings on the 100 block of East First Street into apartments and ground-floor amenity space with the help of state tax credits.

Windsor hopes the Fire Blocks will get new restaurants, shops and an entertainment destination where people can throw axes and play other games and activities.

MORE: Ax throwing and gaming, new restaurants, new bars planned for downtown Dayton, developer says

The Fire Blocks developer also has plans to apply for $150,000 to help fund the rehab of the Dayton Power and Light building at 18-20 S. Jefferson St.

The vacant three-story building is adjacent to the Century Bar, which is a well-known and popular bourbon bar at 10 S. Jefferson St.

Century plans to relocate into the DP&L building and expand. The first floor will be the nationally recognized bar’s new home.

The second floor is expected to have a new cocktail lounge, while the third floor is event to become an event and party space.

The Century Bar’s current building is expected to become part of a new upscale restaurant that wants to occupy a vacant space at the corner of South Jefferson and East Third Street.

The Fire Blocks is centered around the 100 block of East Third Street, which has a collection of empty commercial properties.

MORE: Sneak peek inside Century Bar’s future home

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