Health and motion were highlights in Dublin's annual state-of-the-city address.

Health and motion were highlights in Dublin's annual state-of-the-city address.

The March 15 event was preceded by a wellness event that featured healthy cooking demonstrations and fitness tips. Wellness then continued as a theme as city manager Marsha Grigsby looked at the past year and the future.

"The focus is a healthy city in motion and for us that means many things," she said.

In 2011, Grigsby said, the city created partnerships with local businesses and continued the revitalization of Historic Dublin.

"For the first time last summer, you could really feel how vital the historic district was," she said, noting she saw neighbors interacting over ice cream. "What we saw last summer was a sign of things to come."

After seeing a reduction for the first time in 2009, Dublin's income-tax revenue also continued to rebound last year.

Income-tax revenues have increased over the past two years by about 4 percent, Grigsby said.

Last year the city brought in $71.6 million in income-tax revenue. This year's income-tax revenue could be flat, Grigsby said, but growth is occurring in withholdings which means "more people are working in Dublin and people are getting raises again."

Looking into the future, Grigsby said the city has $129.3 million planned in capital improvements over the next five years.

"We're very fortunate to be able to invest this much into our infrastructure," she said.

This year, with the help of Columbus, Emerald Parkway will be widened between Rings and Tuttle roads.

The city also is working to acquire rights of way and easements for the eighth and final phase of the Emerald Parkway expansion that will take the road from Riverside Drive to Hard Road.

Intersection improvements are planned at Hyland-Croy and Brand roads and Cosgray and Rings roads as the city installs roundabouts.

While the city can invest money in maintaining infrastructure, Grigsby said Dublin is also fortunate it can expand its parks system.

The first phase of Amberleigh Park is expected to open this year, and Grigsby said other planned phases eventually will provide access to the Scioto River.

Preliminary planning for the first phase of improvements to the Interstate 270/U.S. Route 33 interchange is under way, and a new bridge will eventually be erected to transport traffic from I-270 North to U. S. Route 33 West.

According to Grigsby, the surrounding corridor has numerous businesses, and improvement of the interchange is paramount to development in the area.

Another project with implications for future development in Dublin is the Bridge Street corridor plan, which is in the midst of wrapping up. "The demographics of the country and Ohio are changing," Grigsby said, noting that young professionals don't want to buy a house and start a family as soon as they used to.

The Bridge Street corridor will offer opportunities for walkable, urban-style, mixed-used development, she said.

To help initiate the plan, former city manager Terry Foegler was hired last week on a part-time basis.

"I'm excited to have Terry back on the team and working on this council initiative," Grigsby said.