DAYTON—The next Wright factory tour is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 16, 2016. It follows the June 7 announcement that the Ohio General Assembly has approved a $1 million state capital grant to preserve the historic Wright Company factory buildings.
The tour is free and open to the public. No registration is necessary, but NAHA encourages Facebook users to respond on the factory tour’s event page. The tour takes about an hour, but visitors can leave whenever necessary.
The brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright formed the Wright Company in 1909. They built their first factory building in 1910. It was the first American factory built for airplane manufacturing. They added a second building in 1911. The buildings later became part of the Delphi Home Avenue auto parts plant. It closed in 2008 and is now owned by Home Avenue Redevelopment LLC, a redevelopment company.
With the cooperation of Home Avenue Redevelopment, which owns the property, NAHA opens the site once each month for a free public tour. The purpose of the tours are to raise awareness of the factory and build community support for its restoration.
The factory sits in the middle of a 54-acre site that has been razed and prepared for redevelopment. NAHA’s vision is for the Wright factory to be restored as a national park unit and for the remainder of the site to be redeveloped as an aerospace education, research and manufacturing hub.
In 2009, Congress authorized the National Park Service to restore the factory as a unit of the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park. The Fiscal Year 2017 federal budget request proposes $450,000 in funds for the National Park Service to use in acquiring the factory buildings. NAHA will use the state capital grant and other public and private funds to secure the entire site, begin making site improvements and work with public and private partners to begin its redevelopment.
Please be aware the buildings are not restored. visitors must sign a hold-harmless agreement before entering, and closed-toed shoes are required. No restroom facilities are available. Flashlights (or cellphones with flashlight apps) are recommended as certain areas are dark or dim.
You can help preserve these buildings by spreading the word. Share this announcement on Facebook, Twitter, etc.—just copy the short link, http://bit.ly/WCF1606. Take photos and videos during the tour and post them to your favorite social media. Use the hashtag #wrightfactory so others can find your posts.
The factory entrance is off West Third Street just east of Abbey Avenue. The gate has no specific address, but GPS users can find it by navigating to 2807 W. Third St., Dayton OH 45417.
2807 W. Third St., Dayton OH 45417