Under Construction is WYSO’s series on growth in the greater Dayton area. We dig underneath the physical and economic markers of growth to look at the human consequences. Check back Thursdays for new installments.
The Twin Towers neighborhood in Dayton was established more than a hundred years ago, and it’s been through a lot. Recently 84 new houses opened in the area for low-income families through a public-private partnership organized by East End Community Services. But what does this mean for a neighborhood trying to turn itself around?
From 2000 to 2009, manufacturing jobs in the greater Dayton area were cut in half as businesses consolidated, closed, or went overseas.
“Everything really just kinda died for us,” says Steve Staub, the head of Staub Manufacturing Solutions.
Jobs drained out of the region, around 40,000 in total, and just a few thousand have been added since 2010—not exactly a roaring comeback. But now the remaining workforce is aging, and area manufacturers are having a hard time finding young, educated workers to fill positions doing increasingly high-tech work.
It’s been five years since the housing bubble burst. Lots of people in the Dayton area lost their homes to foreclosure, and many of those homes are still sitting vacant.
Before the housing bust, McCarthy says his work at the Miami Valley Fair Housing Center often focused on discriminatory lending and rental practices; they were trying to get people of color into homes. But since the housing bust, he says the center has shifted focus towards keeping people in the greater Dayton area in their homes, through fighting foreclosures and seeking refinancing.