History of the Project

The centerpiece of the Phoenix community development strategy is the creation of a neighborhood commons that links public amenities and creates a new civic space. В When the Phoenix Stakeholders learned that the Dayton School Board planned to rebuild a new pre-kindergarten through grade eight elementary school in the Fairview neighborhood, the design of the Commons concept began to take shape. The Phoenix Stakeholders worked closely with Dayton Public Schools to negotiate a mutually beneficial arrangement in which the new school planned for the neighborhood was built in the heart of the redevelopment zone.В  Through new building and landscape design the PK-8 school proposed for the Fairview neighborhood and the City owned public pool and park are linked. The new school represents a $13.5 M investment in the neighborhood. CityWide worked to leverage these funds to add additional recreational amenities to the site. An additional $600K dollar was raised to add a spray ground and assessable playground to the site. These amenities were open to the public in June 2011.

City of Dayton Aquatic Park

The master plan for Fairview Commons called for the expansion of aquatic offerings in the City. The Fairview neighborhood has one of the few outdoor pools in the City of Dayton. Through the Phoenix Project additional amenities were planned to create an Aquatic Park in the community. В The goals of the project are: to increase recreational opportunities for low income children and families in Dayton; to build an accessible playground that can accommodate children with a range of abilities; to provide facilities that have neighborhood ownership; and to provide opportunities where citizens can develop more active lifestyles by spending more time playing outdoors.

The Fairview Spray Park and Playground Project was a community driven project in which residents, including children were involved in all phases of the planning process. Children at local schools participated in a design Charette where they could talk about and draw pictures of what their new park could be. Through these efforts, we were successful in getting a small grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) for our spray park development. Families in the community also worked with City of Dayton Recreation and Youth staff to develop the theme for the new amenities coming to their neighborhood, that of an urban beach. В A dedication event for the new park was held on June 11, 2011 with over 300 people attending to celebrate their new park and try out the new amenities.

Dayton Public Schools Fairview Neighborhood School Center

Schools cannot succeed without supportive communities. Good communities cannot succeed without great schools.В  The location of a new community school in the heart of the Phoenix Project area is a great asset for families. Children can walk to school and parents will more readily connect with their neighbors. В В Fairview Elementary is one of the schools chosen by the Dayton School Board to participate in the Neighborhood Schools Centers pilot project. This initiative is designed to create closer relationships between schools and communities. Through the Fairview Neighborhood School Center a broad array of services and programs that meet the social, civic, educational and recreational needs of families are available right in the neighborhood. Fairview is one of five Neighborhood School Center Sites in the Dayton area. To learn more about the Neighborhood School Center Project, click here.

The Fitz Center for Leadership in Community at the University of Dayton led the community wide planning effort to design the school. They organized a planning team of neighborhood residents, civic organizations, businesses, teachers and parents to work with architects from Robert P. Madison and Associates to design the new school. Good Samaritan Hospital has also partnered with DPS to provide funds to build a multi-purpose room on the first floor of the new school for community use. This dedicated space will allow organizations throughout the City to offer programs for families and children and provide space for local civic organization activities as well. The school opened in August 2011.

Future Plans (Lower Commons)

CWDC is currently working on the last phase of Fairview Commons which is the site of the old elementary school (1301 W. Fairview). This three acre site will be developed to add connectivity to the greater Commons.В  We have recently completed a design process with neighborhood stakeholders, CYP studios and Lorenz and Williams for this space, known as the Fairview Commons Family Fitness Park. Our goal is to create a more passive space for walking, picnicking, learning lab gardens (given the proximity to the school) and walkways that connect from Fairview Avenue due north to the Commons and from Benson Avenue to the west, allowing visitors and employees of GSH, as well as neighbors, a place to relax and take a break.

Dayton Public Schools began demolition of the old school this spring with an expected completion date of September 2012.В  CWDC staff has actively started raising funds for this final piece of Fairview Commons.В  We hope to have all the funds in place by summer 2013 so construction can begin in the fall.