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Serving the Community

A new two-story office building planned for one of the key development areas in the City of Dayton would bring together three distinctive community-building organizations under one roof, creating opportunities for broad-based innovative collaborations that could include scores of organizations.

The University of Dayton is planning to construct a new academic and office facility on University property at 1401 S. Main St. to house The Dayton Foundation, the Dayton Development Coalition and the University’s Fitz Center for Leadership in Community.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for the community and for these organizations,” said University of Dayton President Eric F. Spina. “Each views the needs and opportunities of the Dayton community from very different perspectives and each offers unique resources to aid community and economic development, including around issues such as workforce development, preK-16 educational access and success, socioeconomic determinants of health, and reducing structural inequity.”

The Dayton Foundation and the Dayton Development Coalition have signed letters of intent to lease space in the 38,000-square-foot building, which would include offices for the three organizations and shared meeting space. While all details of the project are still being worked out, the University expects to break ground later this year. The DDC and The Dayton Foundation moves are contingent upon the finalization of project details.

“We are very excited about the possibilities,” said Craig Brown, chair of The Dayton Foundation’s Governing Board. “While each of the organizations would maintain their separate operations and identities, being in the same location would allow us to work together more closely to benefit the entire community."

The Foundation works with many colleges, universities and other organizations throughout the region, and the location of the new building will open the door to developing an even deeper relationship with UD, said Michael Parks, president of The Dayton Foundation.

“There’s always been a strong relationship between the Foundation and UD, and this will allow us to leverage the talents of the University’s faculty, staff and students more broadly on leadership initiatives and other community projects,” Parks said.

“It’s an opportunity to do more good for the broader community,” he said.   

Jeff Hoagland, president and CEO of the Dayton Development Coalition, said the new location will place the coalition adjacent to two of its most high-profile projects, the $51-million GE Aviation EPIScenter and the $35-million Emerson Helix Innovation Center. Both are research facilities that tap the expertise and talent of UD students, faculty and staff.

"As we work to grow and recruit businesses to the Dayton region and State of Ohio, this new facility and the surrounding area will allow us to highlight some of our region’s best success stories,” Hoagland said. “We remain committed to Dayton’s urban core and the DDC will remain in the greater downtown area.”

Named for past UD President Emeritus Brother Ray Fitz, S.M., the Fitz Center for Leadership in Community works collaboratively with residents to support community-based, neighborhood partnerships and with students, faculty and staff to develop capacity for leadership in community building.

“This new space creates opportunities for deeper collaboration with all of our partners, which is at the heart of the University’s strategic vision to make a greater impact in our community,” said Hunter Phillips Goodman, executive director of the Fitz Center. “It not only allows the Fitz Center to grow, but it makes us truly accessible to community-based organizations that want to connect with our students, faculty and staff. So many opportunities come from connecting community and University resources. The possibilities are limitless.”


News and Communications Staff