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The Changing Face of Downtown State College

by on February 21, 2018 5:00 AM

As some small businesses and local favorites fade away and new high rises pop up, community members and business owners wonder what the trend means for downtown State College.

The All-American Rathskeller closed after 84 years amidst a very public rent dispute. The owner of The Diner, which opened in 1929, plans to close this spring. Meanwhile at least seven new high-rises or multi-story mixed use building have recently opened, are under construction or are being planned in the downtown.

"I think that we have to decide as a community what we want downtown to be," says Duke Gastiger, who owned the Rathskeller with his wife, Monica, for the past 30 years. The Gastigers also owned Spats Cafe, which was also forced to close but will merge with the Allen Street Grill in the near future.

State College Mayor Don Hahn says the borough can control some things, but not the commercial market.

"In many ways the downtown businesses are victims of the success of the downtown," Hahn said, adding that local business owners are being priced out of the market.

Centre County Report's Katie Litwin has more.

This video is produced by and for Centre County Report and shared through a partnership with

The Centre County Report is produced by students and faculty from Penn State's College of Communications. It is designed to serve a dual purpose. It is a source of news and information to the residents of Centre County.
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