The Lazarus Building

Loction: 2nd and Main St.
Year built: Opened in 1912

  Considered a symbol of downtown Dayton, the Lazarus building has been vacant since 1991 when it was closed by Federated Department stores. The store originally opened in 1912 as the Rike-Kumler Co., and was owned and operated by the Rike family until 1959.

Chronology

* March 9, 1853: David K. Rike and partners open Prugh, Joice & Rike at 17E. Third St.
* 1865: The name is changed to D.K. Rike Dry Goods Co.
* 1893: The store moves to southwest corner of Fourth and Main streets. The white building, copied from a World's Fair structure, featured arched windows and doors, white woodwork, a winding stairway and Oriental rugs.
* 1907: Name changes to Rike-Kumler Co., after owners Fred H. Rike, David's son, and I.G. Kumler, Fred's cousin.
* 1912: Fred Rike opens a department store at Second and Main streets. Innovations include a power plant, laundries, a restaurant, a food market and alteration department.
* 1953: Building enlarged to 504,275 square feet, and Rike's maintains offices in New York, London and Yokohama, Japan.
* 1959: Rike's becomes the 12th store in the Cincinnati-based Federated Department Stores chain.
* 1960s: Store expands into former Miami Hotel at Second and Ludlow streets.
* 1980: Rike's announces closing of seventh through ninth floors of store;four months later, it leases two floors to E.F. McDonald Co.
* 1982: Federated renames the store Shillito-Rike's following a merger within the company, and vacates sixth floor.
* 1984: Shillito-Rike's begins phasing out budget-basement operation and closes downtown auto service center.
* 1986: Shillito-Rike's is renamed Lazarus after another Federated restructuring; bakery closes.
* 1988: Campeau Corp. buys Federated; 100 employees laid off locally. Parking garage at North Main and Monument Avenue closes.
* January 1990: Federated files for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
* October 1991: Bankruptcy judge clears way for Federated to emerge from Chapter 11 reorganization Feb. 3, 1992, as a publicly traded company. Between the Chapter 11 filing and October 1991, Federated closed 40 stores.
* Dec. 31, 1991: Lazarus closes the downtown Dayton store.
* July 10, 1995: 2nd and Main Ltd., a group of Dayton businesses, purchases the still-vacant Lazarus building for $2.75 million. Feasibility studies will be done to determine whether to renovate the building or raze it.
* Nov. 14, 1996 -- Second and Main Ltd. approves a plan to demolish the existing building and build a 12-story office building with a hotel and performing arts center. The new structure is to be called Second and Main Center.

Sources:

DDN 7-12-95
DDN 11-15-96 "Plan unveiled: Center includes theater, hotel, offices."