Mobility forum a hit; work to save Annex continues

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

Members of the Clintonville Area Commission's planning and development committee will use information obtained at a "very successful" open house last week to develop recommendations for improving mobility in the neighborhood, said Daniel B. Miller, chairman of the commission.

Speaking on behalf of Andrew Overton, chairman of the committee, Miller reported at last week's meeting of the CAC that about 30 people attended the Clintonville Mobility Framework open house earlier in the week. They discussed a variety of issues and ways to improve getting around on foot, by bicycle and vehicle, Miller said.

Also reporting on behalf of a committee head unable to be on hand for the commission meeting, Miller said the efforts to preserve the old Clinton Annex building are continuing, although a decision by Columbus City Schools officials regarding its demolition may be imminent.

Reading from remarks prepared by Mary Beth Hirsch, chairwoman of the Committee to Investigate Preservation of the Clinton Annex Building, Miller said a meeting was held with members of the Clinton Elementary School PTA to address concerns about possible privatization of the old building, which sits on the school's property on Clinton Heights Avenue.

Their concerns, according to the report from Hirsch, revolved around having non-employees of the district gaining access to the one-time high school structure that was erected in about 1904. They also are worried that a faster-than-expected increase in student population may require the use of the old building for classrooms, Hirsch said.

For her part, Hirsch wrote that she sees no sense in potentially destroying a useable 10,000-square-foot building in order to gain 3,000 square feet of green space for the school.

Also at last week's CAC meeting, Rob Wood, District 1 representative, gave a report on a recent meeting regarding Blueprint Columbus, an ongoing effort to eliminate rainfall overflows into the city's sanitary sewer system.

The city's sanitary sewer system works well most of the time, but rainwater and snow melt can seep into the system and overload it, according to a page on the city's website devoted to the project. The excess water enters the sanitary sewer from yards, roofs, downspouts, foundation drains and other sources; relief points provide an outlet for the excess flow, and discharges from these outlets are referred to as sanitary sewer overflows, according to the website.

Clintonville and the Linden area will host the first pilot projects to see if sealing residential water lines, constructing rain gardens and using other "green engineering" methods can avoid far more costly means of reducing overflow incidents, Wood said.

The next meeting relating to Blueprint Columbus will take place Jan. 28 in the shelter house at Goodale Park, he added.

Commission members also voted unanimously to authorize Nancy Kuhel of District 2 to spend $140 on business cards and $190 on stationery with Kenwel Printers Inc. on Indianola Avenue. While Staples could provide each member of the commission with 100 business cards and print 500 sheets of letterhead at a lower price, Kuhel said she felt it was important to spend the money locally.

Finally, by a unanimous vote, three changes to the CAC's bylaws were amended.

Based on work completed by a task force headed by former commission member Mike Folmar, the advisory body adopted a new requirement that five commissioners are needed to call a special session, not three. They also approved a provision stating that task forces created by the chairman exist until the next CAC election or the members are discharged.

The third revision attempted to clear up confusion about the boundaries between Districts 6 and 9, removing all reference to Sharon Township and instead referring to the Columbus city limits.