The Greene shopping center just beyond Kettering’s eastern border is great for the economy and a wonderful place to go for shopping and entertainment. Or, The Greene is bad for the economy and an environmental insult.
It all depends on whom you ask.
Opened for business in 2006, The Greene is a suburban center for commerce and social gatherings. The shopping center is a destination for many, both young and old, and serves as a meeting place for everything from meals to movies and a place to shop for clothes, computers, books and more.
Many Fairmont students are among those who enjoy what’s offered at The Greene, located at the intersection of Dorothy Lane and Stroop Road. “I like The Greene because it’s a great place to hang out with friends and there’s a lot to do,” said freshman Cole Cavanah. “There are a lot of stores and restaurants.”
Some prefer trees to shopping center
However, others at Fairmont are less than knocked out by the sprawling, 72-acre shopping center that’s designed more like a traditional downtown than a mall. They find it ironic that the complex is called The Greene, but a large green space had to be sacrificed to create it.
“Kettering didn’t really need a mall, especially since it messes up the intersection near I-675 and they had to cut down an entire forest to make it,” said senior Ali Kneubuehl. “I’ve never gone to The Greene, and I don’t want to spend a single penny there.”
Others agree with Kneubuehl’s views. “The Greene has had not only a significant impact on the loss of trees, as well as the flora and fauna that would live in those trees, but also in the increased traffic into the area,” said Josh Oliver, adviser of the Fairmont High School Earth Corps, a group of students who are concerned about the environment.
Good for economy … or hard on small businesses?
Increased traffic, however, can be seen as a sign of increased economic activity, which many feel is a positive factor for the area. “The Greene has probably helped a lot of people gain employment that may have otherwise been cut back or out of work due to the economic times throughout the entire Miami Valley,” said Dave Duebber, general manager of The Dayton Mall.
Duebber also feels The Greene has been a positive for consumers. “It’s providing more options and helping to keep more dollars in the region instead of having people head to Cincinnati or Columbus,” he said.
But even Duebber notes a downside to the equation. “More competition also means splitting up those dollars more between all area businesses – not just the malls, but restaurants and entertainment venues,” he said.
The Greene is actually located in Beavercreek, right at the edge of Kettering, but it draws business from many surrounding cities, and some say it negatively impacts many smaller businesses. “I don’t like that The Greene decentralizes the city of Dayton,” said Oliver.
Love it or hate it
The Greene clearly has both friends and foes. Among the foes are sophomore Mark Tulloch. “I hate The Greene,” he said simply.
Sophomore Alex Allen agrees. “It’s either too crowded or there’s nobody there to hang out with.”
But those who like the shopping center can’t seem to get enough of it. “I like going there. It’s a great place to go on a Friday night,” said junior Jennifer McGarry. “There are a lot of stores, which is great, but it’s really expensive.”
Some students wish The Greene would get even more stores. “I personally like The Greene, though I feel it could use more variety,” said junior Evan Barnes. “I like going there, though. It’s a fun place.”
The Flyer contacted representatives of The Greene management for this story, but they declined to be interviewed.