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Clintonville Area Commission

Agenda packed for dual gatherings

Discussion on new restaurants, brewery, four guest speakers expected at tonight's meeting

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Four into two wouldn't work, let alone eight.

With four guest speakers scheduled for the August meeting of the Clintonville Area Commission and four items on the zoning and variance agenda, Chairman Daniel B. Miller realized the normal two hours set aside for the sessions wasn't going to be nearly enough.

Last week, he called for a special session an hour earlier than the usual starting time. The special meeting, which will be devoted to development issues, will begin at 6 p.m. today, Aug. 7. It will be followed at 7 p.m. by the regular session, featuring guest speaker Alan D. McKnight, director of the city's Recreation and Parks Department, along with three other speakers.

Both gatherings will take place at the Whetstone branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, 3909 N. High St.

"Essentially, two hours wasn't going to work out," Miller said.

The extra hour afforded by the special meeting was the only way he could see to get through the normal business of the advisory panel and still have time for the speakers.

"I think we'll be able to get through it in the first hour," Miller said of the zoning and variance cases. "If not, we can always take some of the zoning matters into the regular meeting."

Miller had previously announced that four guest speakers were on tap for the regular meeting.

They are:

* McKnight, who will address the "issues and challenges involved with maintaining pools within the city and developing new pools," according to the announcement.

He was invited to speak in light of the planned closing of the Olympic Swim Club on Indianola Avenue at the end of the current season.

* Jason Nicholson, special events coordinator with the parks department, regarding the process for handling racing events and provide notification to neighborhoods.

* Nikki Jenkins, outreach program coordinator with Columbus Public Health, on the Infant Safe Sleep Initiative.

* Vincent Valentino, a representative from the Office of Environmental Stewardship, to discuss the city's sustainability plan for 2015-20 and the community review process.

The zoning and variance matters scheduled to come before the CAC during the special session include:

* A 16-spot reduction in required parking spaces for a proposed brewery at 2971-2977 N. High St. as well as variances on interior landscaping, parking maneuverability and vision clearance.

* Variances for a private garage at 286 W. Weisheimer Road.

* A demolition permit to make way for a Raising Cane's restaurant at 5132 N. High St.

* Parking setback, parking space and several other variances for a proposed Rusty Bucket restaurant at the southwest corner of High Street and Croswell Road.

The two restaurant cases are likely to generate a great deal of discussion. The Raising Cane's site has been the subject of ongoing online complaints from, among others, members of Friends of the Ravines and Friends of the Lower Olentangy Watershed over alleged clear-cutting of old-growth trees at Bill Moose Ravine. Representatives of Raising Cane's have said they will attend the meeting.

The Rusty Bucket site also sits on a ravine, although that one is under a culvert.

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