Three new state liquor stores are coming to the greater Dayton region, and Ohio will add 20 new liquor agency stores statewide in the coming months, the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control disclosed this morning, Nov. 1.
The liquor-control division today invited potential applicants to apply for new state liquor-store agency locations in the Centerville, West Chester and Piqua areas.
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The precise locations of the new stores are not yet known. State liquor control officials pick a spot on a map in communities that their market research and data show are underserved, and invite prospective retailers to pitch business plans at locations that are within a two-mile radius of that point.
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In the Centerville area, that point on the map is at South Main Street (Ohio 48) and Marco Lane, near the Centerville Place Shopping Center and Kroger Marketplace in south Centerville. In West Chester, the point on the map is at Tylersville Road and Cox Road near the Voice of America Center east of I-75. In Piqua, the map point is on East Ash Street (Ohio 36) and Looney Road just east of the I-75/Ohio 36 interchange.
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In each case, applicants can seek the state’s blessing to open a liquor store within two miles of those points on the map. Applications are due in late November.
Applicants “must have experience operating a retail business or equivalent experience, and must have sufficient financial resources to establish and manage a retail business,” according to the division of liquor control’s web site. Contracts will not be awarded to anyone in bankruptcy or receivership, or who is delinquent in their taxes, liquor-control officials say.
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Jim Canepa, superintendent of the Ohio Division of Liquor Control, told this news outlet in August that there had been “no thoughtful strategy” in recent years of how to grow the liquor business that the state essentially owns and operates. “We will look for spaces to tap into revenue,” he said.
Under Canepa’s leadership, the division of liquor control will attempt to demystify spirits and focus on the stories behind some of the craft spirits available — and being produced — in the state, much as Ohio craft breweries and wineries have done, the superintendent said.
“We want to develop a new customer experience,” Canepa said.
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But the liquor-control division also will continue to promote responsible consumption, Canepa said. The successful applicant for the new Fairborn liquor agency will have to undergo mandatory training and obtain alcohol-server certification.
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In early August, Canepa changed some long-standing department policies so that it will be easier for Ohio’s small distilleries to sell directly to nearby bars, restaurants and retailers — a move that drew enthusiastic praise from Dayton-area distilleries such as Stillwright’s in Bath Twp. and Indian Creek in Miami County.