The final step in fine-tuning a plan to further help redevelop the Morse Road corridor is scheduled for Wednesday, April 30.
Beginning at 6 p.m. in the Haimerl Center, 1421 Morse Road, Northland Alliance Chairwoman Joyce Bourgault and Jesus J. Lara, an associate professor at Ohio State University's Austin E. Knowlton School of Architecture, will welcome community residents to a review of work done by students with the City and Regional Planning Program Design Studio Team.
The students in Lara's class are gaining real-world experience in dealing with clients while the community will be receiving a report in book form that could help in seeking funding for redevelopment projects along one of the neighborhood's major commercial corridors.
Roughly two dozen people participated in workshops held March 19 and April 9.
Key issues being addressed in the "Strategic Visioning for the Morse Road Corridor" project include safety, open space, natural resources, accessibility, connectivity, economic revitalization and cultural celebration.
The final design review meeting on April 30 will begin with an introduction by Lara and Bourgault, followed by 20 minutes on the background and process for the project.
Two community projects identified by the students will be discussed, each for around half an hour. These are the creation of greenways along the corridor and "Northland Hubs." The latter would be in three specific locations, one each near Morse Road's intersections with Tamarack Boulevard, Alum Creek and Cleveland Avenue, according to Bourgault.
The one at Tamarack Boulevard, she said, would focus on creating a bazaar or open market near the Ohio Department of Taxation headquarters, a place for businesses and others to sell wares, possibly under tents.
"I look at it as kind of being like the International Festival, except on a broader scope," Bourgault said. "I think the next meeting is really going to develop that ... so they get a better idea what the hubs could accomplish.
"Some of the things they came up with are really interesting."
Lara has led groups of students in similar projects in the past, focusing on various parts of the city. These include Weinland Park, the West Side and Linden Village.
The results of those studies were published in book form, and at the March 19 workshop, Lara announced that funding from the United Way of Central Ohio and the Columbus Foundation would enable a similar book to be created for the Morse Road project.