Downtown Expands Outdoor Refreshment Area

Most of downtown Dayton, OH, has become an outdoor drinking district, a move city leaders say creates cultural vibrancy and economic vitality.

Business owners asked to expand the original Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area (DORA) with a new downtown drinking district that is more than nine times as large and includes dozens of restaurants and bars.

Alcohol consumption is permitted in the enlarged area from noon to midnight seven days a week.

“Some of our downtown businesses are still struggling with not as many workers coming into offices every day,” says Sandy Gudorf, president of the Downtown Dayton Partnership. “We’re doing everything we can to help them.”

The partnership is being very proactive about ensuring a successful expansion. In one example, participating merchants are asked to sign a “good neighbor agreement” that covers responsible alcohol sales.

“It just reminds them what their responsibilities are and that they need to take ownership,” Gudorf says. “This only works if we all work together.”

More on downtown refreshment areas appears in the July issue of Downtown Idea Exchange newsletter. Click to learn more about Downtown Idea Exchange and other resources for revitalizing downtowns and commercial corridors.

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