The year began with a whimper but is ending with something of a bang in the Northland area.

Here's a look at the top five stories for the year rapidly coming to a close:

Grocery going, going ... Community leaders were deeply disappointed when officials with Giant Eagle announced that the Northland store, 1000 E. Dublin-Granville Road, would be among three in central Ohio that would cease operations March 4.

Problem sites repurposed: Two problem-plagued motels in the neighborhood arose, Phoenix-like, from the ashes of being declared public nuisances. The former Clarion Hotel and Suites Conference Center at 900 E. Dublin-Granville Road debuted Oct. 10 as the new 144-bed Sun Behavioral Columbus psychiatric facility. In November, it was announced that the shuttered Ramada Plaza on Sinclair Road would be transformed into a U-Haul store and self-storage facility.

Major Meijer makeover: After Huntington Bancshares had invested $18.3 million in the former Meijer store at 5555 Cleveland Ave., the new Huntington Gateway Center employing 1,300 people opened in November.

Area-commission council raises questions: Mayor Andrew J. Ginther's inclusion of a budget item for a council of area commissions left Northland Community Council officers confused. Would they be on the outside looking in when this outreach took place? Not to worry, said Carla Williams-Scott, director of the Columbus Department of Neighborhoods; the NCC is considered to have the same status as the city-funded area commissions.

Marijuana moves: The Northwest Side, Clintonville and the Northland area are all neighborhoods in Columbus where medical marijuana dispensaries could be located once the legislature-approved program goes into effect next fall. Anthony J. Celebrezze, assistant director of the Department of Building and Zoning Services, said sites under consideration include Bethel Road, North High Street, Morse Road and East Dublin Granville Road.