Time to build a middle-outer-outerbelt?
The Columbus Dispatch wrote Suburbs beyond 1-270 top growth
Aging populations, expensive houses and high real-estate taxes explain population losses in the inner-ring cities of Bexley, Grandview Heights, Upper Arlington and Worthington, while Pickerington, Powell and New Albany boom
Thursday, June 28, 2007
By Lisa Halverstadt and Jim Woods
When Nancy Kopaczewski moved from Pickerington to just outside New Albany three years ago, she wanted a small-town atmosphere.
Then the development followed her.
Powell, New Albany and Pickerington — which not long ago were farming towns — added people faster than any other communities in the state from 2000 through July 2006, according to estimates that the U.S. Census Bureau released this morning.
Housing starts are down locally and nationally. But the suburbs are prospering outside I-270, where they have room to grow and popular school systems.
Older, inner-ring suburbs in central Ohio — Bexley, Upper Arlington, Grandview Heights and Worthington — have declined in population by about 7 percent.
The population in those cities is aging, said Nancy Reger of the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, and they have limited space. Although the school districts retain their reputations, houses are expensive, property taxes are high and graduates tend not to move back to their hometown.
Still, central Ohio remains Ohio’s fastest-growing region and Columbus remains the nation’s 15th-largest city, with the population growing nearly 3 percent from April 2000 to July 2006.