In addition to running his digital signage and customer-service technology company, Chris Riegel continues to manage downtown Dayton’s tallest building, now known as “Stratacache Tower.”
MORE: Vectren continues backing Dayton Air Show as title sponsor
Riegel’s goal today is to have the building 90 percent to 95 percent filled by the end of 2021, an occupancy the former Kettering Tower has not seen since probably the early- to mid-1980s.
“As we continue to upgrade and enhance the building, we’re continuing to try to make use of any of the available space that’s not used today, both internally and externally,” said Riegel, who is founder and chief executive of Dayton-based digital technology business Stratacache. “It’s just part of that agenda to fill the building and bring it back to life.”
About 14 months ago, Stratacache’s real estate acquisition arm, Arkham Ventures, bought what was then Kettering Tower for $13 million. That purchase came less than two months after the company also bought the Courthouse Plaza tower at 10 N. Ludlow St. for nearly $1.7 million.
So far, so good, Riegel said Monday: “There has been kind of a re-ignition of interest into the building since we purchased it. We’ve signed a number of new tenants for the building, and we continue to negotiate with a number of new ones as well, plus our own (Stratacache’s) consumption.”
MORE: Wright-Patterson has the coronavirus testing kit for DoD beneficiaries
A law firm will move to the building, as will another company he said he could not name. A third large-bloc tenant will likely be announced in the next several weeks, Riegel also said.
Artist renderings provided by Riegel offer clues to his plans for reactivating tower’s lower level. He still plans to open a exterior rooftop patio restaurant atop the attached lower tower, with an eye toward making the building an overall “hub” in that part of downtown.
Rooftop restaurants seem to have caught on as a downtown idea. About a month ago, Columbus developer Crawford Hoying announced plans for a rooftop bar and full-service restaurant overlooking the Day Air Ballpark baseball diamond in what was the Mendelson’s building.
There are also plans to remake Stratacache Tower’s lower level along Second Street in a bid to “re-image” the structure (situated at Main and Second streets), Riegel said. A local artist has been commissioned for artwork at that level along the building.
“It’s a great skyline” in downtown Dayton, Riegel said. “But at the street level, you need to bring more vibrancy down to the street level.”
Also: a company dedicated to digital signage (among other products) will not neglect signage planned for the tower. A sign near the top of the building is still in the works, but at the moment, the spread of coronavirus has slowed sign production in China, which has delayed plans, Riegel said.