Cover Story: Welcome to The Soapbox District?

Entrepreneurs preach a new vision for West Fourth Street

Scott Beseler

Tic...Tic...Tic...Bang: the "Soapbox District's" newest club is about to open.

When asked about his new nightclub, Bang, Josh Heuser changes the subject. While he's more than happy to speak on the subject of his own establishment, Heuser would rather talk about the potential for the entire West Fourth Street area.

"We're not just pushing Bang," he says. "We're pushing this entire district."

In conjunction with Bang's opening, Heuser and partner Nick Grammas are taking steps to unite several neighborhood mainstays under one umbrella.

This unofficial association would encompass longtime city favorites such as Tina's, Plum Street Café, Federal Reserve, Poison Room and Head First Sports Café under an area moniker of The Soapbox District, which would also promote retail and the arts.

"The name makes sense on many levels," Heuser says, "not only because the entire block is shaped like a bar of soap but with the city's rich history with Procter & Gamble and the fact that the city needs a place where young people can again be heard, in essence, as if they were on their soapbox. This could be a very strong residential, entertainment, retail and business district with the right attention."

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