HAMILTON, Ohio — In Hamilton, four new restaurants are set to open within the next year – all on the west side of the Great Miami River – as developers pump millions further down the city’s Main Street.
“Hamilton’s hot,” Greater Hamilton Chamber of Commerce president Dan Bates said. “Hamilton is an exciting place to be, and it just keeps getting hotter.”
He said the time is right for the city to become a hub of activity – and with businesses developments popping up down Main Street through the city, Hamilton officials are calling it a renaissance.
“There’s 25,000 cars that go by this building every day,” Hamilton’s Urban Backyard co-owner Dave Ernst said. “Soon there will be a reason for those cars to stop.
With his eyes on the future, Ernst is turning an old building into something new: Hamilton’s Urban Backyard, or The Hub.
“Something kept pushing,” he said. “You’ve gotta do something. You have to keep going forward. If we all stopped, what do we have to look forward to? We wanted to make a difference for this city, a difference for our kids.”
The inside of the building will soon feature 16 beers on tap, while 7,000 square feet of outdoor space will be filled with picnic tables, fire pits, and food trucks. Ernst said his excitement goes beyond just this space.
“It seems like every day there’s a new announcement,” he said.
One block East, a $2.5 million renovation will turn a former body shop into an Agave and Rye restaurant. A block past that, Billy Yanks – a burger shop and bourbon bar – is set to open in May.
“This kind of fills in the missing link for Main Street,” Bates said. There’s a lot of activity at the other end. A few shops at this end. This creates a destination point for this end of Main Street.”
He said the businesses will draw in foot traffic one step at a time.
“Now that everything is opening back up around us, we’re not reopening,” Bates said. “We’re full speed ahead. We want this to be the Hub for further development.”