Add the Northland Community Council to the growing chorus of voices asking that Columbus Crew SC stay in Columbus.
Council representatives voted unanimously at the Nov. 8 meeting to back a resolution to that effect that was drafted by Ken Gilbert, Forest Park representative on the NCC.
Gilbert and his wife, Catherine Gilbert, have been season-ticket holders for the Major League Soccer franchise for more than 20 years.
Crew investor-operator Anthony Precourt has threatened to move the team to Austin, Texas, if the club doesn't get a stadium near downtown Columbus.
Columbus Mayor Andrew J. Ginther and Alex Fischer, Columbus Partnership CEO, were scheduled to meet this week with Precourt and MLS Commissioner Don Garber regarding the Crew's future.
"The team has become a part of the fabric and soul of our community," Gilbert wrote. "Our children dream of someday playing for their hometown team, and two current players, Wil Trapp and Alex Crognale, realized that dream through Crew-sponsored youth programs. There are hundreds of jobs, direct and indirect, part-time and full-time, provided by the team in our area."
Community council President Emmanuel V. Remy said he asked Gilbert to write the resolution as a means of showing the Northland-area's desire that the Crew remains a hometown team.
"This resolution supports these civic leaders in their efforts to keep the Crew where they belong: in Columbus," it concluded.
Clintonville Area Commission members also voted in favor of a similar resolution Nov. 2. That document termed the Crew a "vital economic driver to the city of Columbus and surrounding Columbus metropolitan area of between $20 million and $25 million."