Services ala carte – To SID or not to SID, that, alas, is the question

I’m sure Downtown property owners would have liked to pick and choose what services they were paying for when the Special Improvement District was created for Downtown to fund the Downtown Dayton Partnership. They didn’t get a choice.

However, now the Oregon District Business Association is getting exactly that option:

Partnership to provide services in Oregon District – Dayton Business Journal:
The Downtown Dayton Partnership will start providing services to the Oregon District Aug. 6.

Members of the Oregon District Business Association ­– composed of businesses on Fifth Street and within the historic neighborhood — entered into a one-year contract to receive services from the partnership, according to a release issued by the partnership Tuesday.

Terms of the deal were not released.

Oregon district businesses will receive services similar to those the central business district gets: business recruitment and retention; marketing and advocacy; housing development; amenity development; and environmental services, including the Ambassador program.

The Ambassadors began work in the district this week in light of Restaurant Week, a semi-annual event spearheaded by the Miami Valley Restaurant Association. Throughout the year, Ambassadors will work in the district Wednesday through Saturday evenings, providing cleaning and safety services.

“The Oregon District Business Association will pay for these services through membership dues, proceeds from the District’s annual Haunt Fest and from private contributions,” said Tom Tornatore, president of the business association, in the release.

The groups are still working on long-term options for a future relationship. The Oregon District may create its own special improvement district or become part of the Downtown Dayton special improvement district, according to the release.

The cooperation among downtown groups has stemmed from the groups’ involvement on each others’ boards, said Michael Greitzer, co-chair of the partnership, in the release. Oregon District and Webster Station representatives serve on the partnership’s board, and Sandy Gudorf, president of the partnership, serves on the boards of those two groups.

“Regardless of district boundaries, we are all part of downtown Dayton, and this agreement allows us all to work more closely together,” Greitzer said.

It’s sad that the City can’t manage to provide these fundamental services without having to create all these semi-autonomous organizations. One City- One Dayton.

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10 Responses

  1. D. Greene July 31, 2007 / 4:56 pm
    Yeah, what a shame that private groups are organizing without the direct help or supervision of the state. Part of the problem is people just sitting around complaining, waiting for the City to do something.

    Of course, the DDP is one of those unholy alliances of business and government that ought to be abolished and replaced with something more in line like this new Oregon District initiative. Or maybe they could be in the same group. Most people that come into the city to work or shop consider downtown/oregon district to not be very separate things anyways.

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  2. David Esrati July 31, 2007 / 5:43 pm

    D. -You do realize the DDP is financed with an additional property tax?
    And that ODBA is having to hire their own private police force to do what the DPD can’t seem to accomplish?
    And that there are buildings that could be generating tax revenue in the OD- that can’t be used because of zoning regulations that conflict with Historic District protections?
    If all the buildings were occupied- and creating jobs and revenue- it would be much easier to share the costs of the clean and safe program.
    Just think if the 5th street deli and wine hadn’t had to fight for a year to get their liquor permit? The problems start and end in City Hall.
    Everyone else is just trying to do end runs until someone steps up and tackles the real problems.

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  3. Jeffrey July 31, 2007 / 6:20 pm
    Way way back, years ago, I recall John Woodie had this proposal to move to a Greater London concept. Essentially reduce the size of “Dayton” to downtown and some adjacent areas (sort of the way the City of London is really the area inside the old Roman walls plus a few other adjacent lands), and let the rest of the neighborhoods either de-incoporated or form their own local governments. Essentially to split up the city into a bunch of local governments.

    His catch was that there would be a metropolitian police force, water, sewer, etc, as they have in London …but for things like local government and maybe things like zoning and such, aside from large scale planning, these neighborhood governments would be independent.

    It was really outside the box thinking but it sort of made sense, too.

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  4. David Esrati July 31, 2007 / 6:56 pm

    Jeffrey-
    I take it you meant “Paul Woodie”
    And- this is just another spin on Uni-Gov. Columbus works like that for the most part.

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  5. D. Greene July 31, 2007 / 7:16 pm
    David – I know all about the DDP – my family is forced to pay into it, thousands and thousands of dollars over the years, and it has netted us absolutely ZERO benefit. We are just unfortunate enough to be stuck in their arbitrary boundary and thus forced to pay this taxation without representation.

    What is it going to take to change the politics in City Hall David?

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  6. David Esrati July 31, 2007 / 7:17 pm

    D.
    Short answer: real leadership.

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  7. Jeffrey July 31, 2007 / 8:22 pm
    Yes, right, Paul Woodie.

    So, if you all decide to abolish the Downtown Dayton Partnership, then what?

    And, as for City Hall, yeah its easy to whine about City Hall. But a related question is who is going to change the priorities of the power structure here so they make a committment to downtown, rather than walk away from it?

    Thats what happened in St Louis. The mayor did act as a convenor for their downtown revitalization effort, but there was bigtime buy-in from the banks and their equivilant of the Dayton Development Coaltion, among others.

    So, say Rhine McLin decides to do something like this. And if there are no takers, is it her and city governments fault?

    Real leadership. It’s lacking in the PRIVATE sector as well as the public sector, IMHO.

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  8. David Esrati July 31, 2007 / 8:50 pm

    Enact adaptive building codes that make it easier to re-use, re-configure old buildings. There are tens of thousands of square feet available just on E. Third between Jefferson and St. Clair that could become office/residential if this was to happen.
    Expand the “boundaries of downtown” to include UD, MVH, Grandview, DAI etc- and consider the area as a whole- with circulation routes- wayfinding- unified parking system and rates- and the whole thing will start to have better karma.
    the fact that 5/3rd field is just outside the DDP area makes the whole thing a joke to begin with.

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  9. Jeffrey July 31, 2007 / 9:43 pm
    ^
    What you are talking about sounds like a comprehensive approach to downtown, which is exactley what St Louis did.

    What you are suggesting about parking….Louisville did do that. But they went beyond garages and also deal with meters. They have a downtown parking authority: PARC.

    For those of you reading and thinking this just some blue-sky stuff, no..it can be done, and has:

    http://www.louisvilleky.gov/PARC/space4u/

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  10. David Esrati July 31, 2007 / 10:19 pm

    Funny thing- I was in Louisville a month ago- took pix of the Parking system and meant to write about it. Same thing in Portland Or. And- Cincy has some lots that work together…

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