Downtown Sandusky world class

Feb 17, 2014


Downtown Sandusky was the central business district for the entire county back in the day. But when the Sandusky Plaza on Cleveland Road and the Perkins Plaza opened in the 1950s and early 1960s, the decline in its dominance began. 

By 1975, when the Sandusky Mall opened, the business district was decimated. 
For three decades, it endured a a "nothing can be done" to fix what was ailing the downtown district that helped create a belief among residents there's "nothing to do downtown." 
Today, however, anyone who still has that impression is someone who hasn't visited downtown Sandusky in the last few years.
The successes are numerous: New restaurants from the Zinc Brassiere to the Volsted Bar, Pier 684, J Bistro, Crush, Dockside Cafe, Water Street Grille, Hot Dog Tony's, Mr. Smith's Coffee House, Subway and Mona Pizza. 
Those new businesses join the long-time eateries like Daly's Irish Pub and the Lunch Box. 
The renaissance at the Sandusky State Theatre brings first-class entertainment to the district and serves as the downtown district's cultural and community center, driving people to visit. 
The Jet Express and Good Time ferries are more assets that help create a vibrant downtown business district. The addition of the new city marina at the Chesapeake condos is still another asset that makes it a place to live, work and have fun.
Without a doubt, the resurgence of downtown Sandusky is underway. If you don't believe it, just visit on any day, and see for yourself.




Yes the downtown is well on its way. So now its time to raise the Admissions Tax and think about lowering the income tax to comport with other world class amusement park destinations so that businesses and new residents will want to relocate to the City of Sandusky.

If Sandusky wants to be a world class tourist city; leaders should adopt the sensibilities of other world class tourist city leaders.


The real driver of economic renewal in the downtown areas of major cities like Dallas, Chicago, et. al. has been gentrification.

Young professionals want to live closer to their work.

Therein lies the 'nut' to crack.


Too bad the latest proposal for the Keller came so late. Those would have been very attractive apartments for young professionals.

I second the motion to raise the admissions tax. 3% is clearly way below other tourist destination cities.


I am a "Young Professional" and I would not want to live in the former Keller Building no matter how it was spruced up. It has nothing to do with the building, it has more to do with location. Downtown is too far away from work, normal retail shopping, grocery shopping, et al. Not to mention that of the restaurants noted above, the only ones that would be halfway affordable on a regular basis is Subway and Mona Pizza.

Now, do not take this comment as me saying that Downtown is all bad, that is not my intent. I am just giving you my thoughts as a young professional. I also really think that there is a lot more work that can be done downtown, take Market Street from Columbus to Wayne for example. It is getting better, but there still is some work to be done.

Man of the Republic

The whole "young professionals want to live close to work" argument doesn't really apply to this area. For the most part you can get anywhere in the Sandusky/Perkins area in about 15 minutes. There is really no where inconvenient to travel to around the county.


It means close enough to walk.


Half the "young professionals" at the loft are in foreclosure anyhow. Rip the building down. Going to need more parking anyhow.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

Downtown is making progress and becoming a destination for sure. More can be done, and it will in time with constant effort, but there are a few more ducks to get in a row first methinks. Cosmetic upgrades, logistical tweaking, etc. for it to become a destination itself apart from the specific venues that draw people in. There may also may be some changes that will upset business owners or residents, and that's something upon which we'll all have to come together.


Do what they did to Huron. Renew the downtown district with less than a forth of the original buildings and put in a boat basin for the boaters. Make the rest into a large parking lot with walking trails from here to nowhere.