Plans Unveiled for New Pen West Pedestrian Bridge
The City of Columbus has released renderings that show the most fleshed-out plans yet for streetscape improvements and a pedestrian bridge over the Olentangy River at the far western terminus of Nationwide Boulevard. The bridge would connect the area — referred to by some as Arena West and by others as Pen West, after the former Ohio Penitentiary that once stood nearby — with the Olentangy Greenway Trail.
New sidewalks, street trees and landscaping would also be added along Nationwide, stretching west from the Area District to the river. Work on the streetscape project is tentatively scheduled to begin before the end of the year, although no firm plans have been announced for the bridge or for a planned park along the river bank.
The improvements and the bridge are meant to complement a series of major developments planned for the area. The city and the developers associated with the projects have been discussing the possibility of a pedestrian bridge since the first plans were announced in 2014.
Work will begin soon on the redevelopment of a former power plant at 555 West Nationwide — it will hold Garth’s Auctioneers and Appraisers as well as a yet-to-be-named office tenant. That project recently received $2 million in state historic tax credits.
Plans for the land directly across the street from the historic building call for new offices and residential, although the team working on that project recently changed — Carey Realty Partners has replaced Borror Properties as the development partner working with Ruscilli Construction.
Visuals via POD Design / City of Columbus.