Background

The Phoenix Project is a public-private partnership that is investing millions of dollars for redevelopment activities in the greater Fairview neighborhood of Dayton, Ohio. This neighborhood is home to Good Samaritan Hospital, one of the largest employers in the area.

Like many urban areas, parts of the neighborhood surrounding the hospital had begun to decline and the ravages of predatory lending practices greatly impacted the stability of the housing market. The hospital was very concerned about the impact the neighborhoods had on its ability to recruit and retain staff, to obtain patients, and to protect the safety of visitors to their facility.

The City of Dayton shared a mutual concern about the neighborhood. The economy of Dayton is sluggish and the health care sector is one of the few market segments that are growing. Residents of the four neighborhood associations surrounding the hospital also concerned as they say the decline of their neighborhood on a daily basis.

In 2003 these stakeholders organized to begin research and planning activities that led to a revitalization strategy and adopted Strategic Plan. CityWide is the manager for the project and charged with implementing activities to implement the projects’ strategic plan.

Neighborhood Revitalization Philosophy

CityWide’s approach to neighborhood revitalization considers the qualities of life we all value: safety, affordable housing, nearby parks and public amenities, vibrant retail close by, and friendly neighbors. Experience has taught us that it takes more than bricks and mortar for our projects to be successful. CityWide’s comprehensive approach to neighborhood change – specifically, inclusion of and outreach to residents and emphasis on the development of social capital – sets it apart from other organizations doing similar work. While the most obvious neighborhood revitalization efforts are often physical, such as the demolition of dilapidated properties and the rehabilitation of neighborhood housing, CityWide believes the programs and services that support and enhance family life, such as safety and social supports, are vital parts of a healthy neighborhood. To learn more about CityWide’s approach to neighborhood revitalization click here.

The Phoenix Strategic Plan

The Phoenix Project area covers four neighborhoods in Northwest Dayton, Ohio and a significant portion of the Salem Avenue corridor. The neighborhoods are: Fairview, Sunnyview-Catalpa Park, and parts of the Dayton View Triangle and College Hill. Comprehensive community development requires multiple strategies addressing the civic, physical and economic health of a neighborhood. In 2008, the Phoenix Strategic Plan was adopted with full support of the neighborhoods and the FROC and Northwest Priority Boards. The plan organizes our work into four basic categories: Neighborhood Stability and Capacity Building; Acquisition, Demolition and Land Assembly for Development; Housing and Community Image. Click here for a copy of the plan.