Imagine Dayton five to ten, ten to twenty … even twenty to fifty years from now! That’s the essence of Dayton Forward, a collaborative planning effort between the City of Dayton and the Dayton Community Development Association. The planning process for Dayton Forward was facilitated by Ernie Munch, a professional planner and architect with years of experience in community planning. Dayton Forward: A Vision for the Future consists of goals, findings and recommendations, planning guidelines, development scenarios of Dayton over the next 5-25 years, detailed sketches of the opportunity sites, and action items for the city and community.
Dayton is nestled in the beautiful Willamette Valley of Oregon, located just off the beaten path at the intersection of Hwy 18 and 221. Dayton is 6 miles from McMinnville, 24 miles from Salem, 36 miles from Portland, and 57 miles from the scenic Oregon coast. The town is well positioned to target the residents of the major metropolitan areas of Portland and Salem for day trips or weekend escapes. Dayton is considered the center of the fruit and vegetable producing area of Yamhill County and is situated less than 5 miles away from 47 of the wineries and vineyards in the Dundee Hills AVA.
Dayton’s pedestrian-friendly downtown centers around a historic town square and park (Courthouse Square Park) that is reminiscent of the way it existed 100 years ago, giving it a unique sense of place. The quaint, small town atmosphere, town square events, and town’s 41 places on the National Register of Historic Places appeal to visitors and locals seeking ‘real life experiences’.
A number of existing businesses and institutions downtown encourage hundreds of people to stop in downtown Dayton on a regular basis. The Post Office has 700 rented boxes; a bank, the library, Palmer Lodge Dayton Community Center, and City Hall are also located downtown; the renowned Joel Palmer Restaurant at 600 Ferry Street is a significant draw for locals and tourists alike.
Investments in Downtown Dayton
From 2008 through Summer 2015, $1,700,000+ of public & private funds have been invested in downtown Dayton.
- Rebuilding of the Martin Miller Fountain in town square, $49,350
- Rehabilitation of historic Fort Yamhill Blockhouse in town square, $10,000
- Rehabilitation of historic bandstand in town square, $20-25,000
- Redesign and improvements of town square, Courthouse Square Park, with new sidewalks, curbs, lighting, new restroom facility, and new playground, $236,000
- Downtown streetscape improvements:
- Widening of 3rd Street along with new sidewalk, street trees & landscaping, $150,000
- New sidewalks, street trees, and waste receptacles on Ferry Street, $32,000
- Facade improvements of five commercial buildings on Ferry Street, 4th Street and Main Street, including private, public & non-profit investments, $325,400
- Purchase and architectural remodeling of Palmer Creek Lodge Dayton Community Center, along with new sidewalks on 4th Street from Mill to Ferry St., $831,000 (including $3,000 landscaping)
- New highway 18 road signs purchased by the DCDA in 2010 through ODOT, directing visitors to historic downtown Dayton, $500/year
- Veterans Memorial and landscaping in front of the City Hall Annex building, $20-25,000
- Art mural project downtown, $3,190 ($1,300 grant from Yamhill County Cultural Coalition/ $1,890 in private funds & donations)
- New YCTA bus shelter outside City Hall
- City Hall & City Hall Annex energy efficient lighting interior updates, $10,000