Public Input Sought for East Franklinton Creative Community District Plan
An open meeting will be held soon to gather public input on a new creative community plan for the Franklinton neighborhood. The effort is a collaborative project being put together by The City of Columbus, the Franklinton Development Association, the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, and developer Urban Smart Growth who is working on the 400 West Rich project.
“I’m thrilled about the upcoming planning process,” said Jim Sweeney, Director of the Franklinton Development Association. “Having been a part of this sort of thing in the past, I know the process is often as important as the resulting plan. The relationships and energy that build around the collaborative process can often lead strait into implementation of creative development ideas.”
This planning effort is working toward bringing together four main elements: public engagement to determine neighborhood needs, market studies to identify development goals, design approach to establish guidelines for development, and an implementation strategy that brings all partners together for a common vision.
“Public input is very critical to the success of this planning project,” said Vince Papsidero, Planning Division Administrator at the City of Columbus’ Department of Development. “As a community, we’re breaking new ground in terms of growing Columbus’ creative class, building upon the efforts of numerous folks in East Franklinton, and transforming this great neighborhood that sits at the western doorstep to the Downtown.”
Multiple consulting and planning firms are assisting with this project, including project leaders Goody Glancy of Boston, along with support from ACP, McBride-Dale-Clarion, MJB Consulting, Moody Nolan, Nelson/Nygaard, W-ZHA, and Zimmeran/Volk.
The planning process is scheduled to take approximately 12 months and will be submitted for approval by the Franklinton Area Commission, the Columbus Development Commission and Columbus City Council.
“I think that the future of East Franklinton is going to be exciting,” added Sweeney. “But I believe that with significant investments and a strong coalition of progressive developers already in place, and the visionary leadership of Mayor Coleman, we have an amazing opportunity to create a very special place.”
The public meeting will be held on Thursday, September 15th from 6pm to 8pm at the Dodge Park Recreation Center located at 667 Sullivant Avenue in Franklinton. The meeting is open to anyone and everyone who wants to share their thoughts on the future of this neighborhood.
“The effort to get involved is worthwhile because we’re at the first steps in establishing a strong home for the independent arts in Columbus,” said Papsidero. “Similar efforts have been highly successful in other cities, both in the US and around the world. We can learn from those experiences while creating an environment that is unique to Columbus and East Franklinton.”