Business owners around Dayton Mall divided over what should replace closed Danbarry theaters



“This matter is important enough that all three directors are in attendance,” Morris said.

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Steve Perez, president of Tiger Joe’s Fitness Equipment at 8918 Kingsridge Drive, just north of the closed theater, said the company has been around since 2006.

“In the 15 years since we built our showroom, we’ve seen several businesses disappear within the mile radius of our showroom with very few moves,” Perez told administrators in a letter obtained by this medium. He said those closed businesses included Sears, Elder Beerman, Prime Printing, Joker’s Comedy Club, Golden Corral, Danbarry Cinemas and “many shopping center tenants.”

Perez said he understood allegiance to a master plan but that “reality is reality.”

“Holding out for specialty retail stores and apartments in this location is such a goal, especially with the new COVID world we find ourselves in,” he said. “Specialty retail is NOT likely to move into this location in the next few years – and apartments also appear to be a stretch.”

Perez praised the admins for doing a “great job” in working towards a better Miami crossing area, “but times have changed a bit and I think an adjustment of plans / goals might be needed – especially with the deterioration of the shopping center lottery “.

Dayton Mall general manager David Duebber wrote to township officials on September 30, saying he realized that use of the concession “would not be 100% in line” with the master plan.

“However, in light of the extraordinary circumstances that have affected our world over the past year and a half, almost everyone has been forced to reassess all aspects of life,” Duebber wrote in the letter. “For example, from a Dayton Mall perspective, we had to focus on more non-commercial uses for our tenant mix. “

To exploreMiami Twp. create a parks advisory council

Office complexes deal with businesses that can operate very efficiently with a remote workforce and no longer require traditional office space, Duebber said.

These “unprecedented times” have had a significant impact – and will continue to impact – all areas of business and business growth for some time, he said.

“Having said that, the possibility of setting up a new business in the township and redeveloping a very difficult area would, in my opinion, be a welcome sight. Again, while not necessarily in line with the master plan, this could aid efforts to maintain the township area as the primary destination for local and regional customers.

But not all business owners have said they have the same optimism for a dealership that will breathe new life into the area, including those who could potentially benefit from it.

“While I think adding a car dealership on this property would be good for my business, I don’t think it fits the overall plan for the area,” said Mark Keilholz, owner of Skyline Chile at 8906 Kingsridge . Drive, in a September 11 letter to Miami Twp. Zoning commission. “I think the region needs a more mixed approach to development. I would also like to see green spaces for the region, with a gathering place for the community.

Joe Poelking, owner of Poelking Lanes South at 8871 Kingsridge Drive, wrote to township officials saying he was not sure the dealership was the direction the township is seeking.

He said he was sad to see Danbarry and Golden Corral cinemas close, but thinks a car dealership “is not the right fit.”

To exploreMiami Twp. create a parks advisory council

Bob Reichert, owner and general counsel of Kenwood Dealer Group, said the Dayton Mall Area master plan could not have anticipated “the drastic change” that has occurred since its inception in 2015, including online spending putting “enormous pressure on traditional outlets, not to mention the abandonment of the office as a central workplace and a pandemic.”

Reichert, in a letter to the trustees, said allowing the property to remain vacant in the hope that private investors would build retail stores and offices seemed “unrealistic”.

Replacing the deteriorating property that has been closed for years gives this area an “attractive, state-of-the-art facility,” which would generate additional tax revenue for the township, Reichert said. This is because the property is in a special tax district that collects income from owners and employees, with these funds going to support security services and infrastructure in the surrounding area.

The tax district would benefit from the “first day” of the concession due to an expected workforce of 50 employees, which would increase to 100 employees after two years, Reichert said.


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