The draft of Grandview Heights' "civic spaces and places" study suggests the planned relocation later this year of the city's service department and parks maintenance division would be only the first step in a reshuffling of city facility sites.
Details of the study and the community plan update that are part of the city's Growing on Tradition strategic-planning process will be presented at a public meeting set for 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 26, in the commons at Edison Intermediate/Larson Middle School, 1240 Oakland Ave.
Throughout the planning process, the community's input has been an important resource to help guide the effort, said Patrik Bowman, the city's director of administration and economic development.
Although the documents are in draft form, feedback from residents remains vital, Bowman said.
"The community meeting will give people a chance to let us know if we've missed anything or if we've captured what they've been telling us throughout this process," he said.
The spaces and places plan is a review of city facilities and land, including parks, to help determine how those components can best and most effectively be used, he said.
Among the recommendations presented by the spaces and places steering committee is that the city's municipal offices -- including the administration, finance department and the police and fire departments -- should be moved from their current location at the top of the Grandview Avenue hill at 1016 Grandview Ave. to the soon-to-be-vacated 2 acres at the corner of Goodale Boulevard and Grandview Avenue, where the service department and parks maintenance facilities now sit.
"It's a site that can serve as a gateway to the community," Bowman said.
Construction of the new service department and park maintenance site on McKinley Avenue in Columbus is underway and is on schedule, Mayor Ray DeGraw said in his State of the City address March 12.
The city plans to dedicate the new facility before the end of the year, he said.
The spaces and places plan also recommends that the Grandview Center, located adjacent to the service department, be moved to another location.
"Our residents have indicated that they want an expanded community-center facility that would allow us to provide more programs for residents of all ages," Bowman said.
At the same time, "we found we probably don't have the space or market for a huge community center," he said.
The site of the current municipal complex could be a potential site for an expanded community center, Bowman said.
"The community is pretty clear that they don't really want that facility to be located south of Goodale Boulevard," he said.
Other potential sites suggested in the spaces and places plan include Buck Park, the parcel just east of Wallace Community Gardens, or a partnership that could incorporate a site within or adjacent to a school or the Grandview Heights Public Library.
"One of the real opportunities we want to continue to explore is creating more partnerships with the schools and the library to have programs that benefit each of us and the overall community," Bowman said.
The civic spaces and places steering committee will forward a final set of recommendations to City Council, he said.
The updated community plan will be presented first to the planning commission for its review, Bowman said.
The commission will tweak the plan before forwarding it to council later this year, he said.
"The community plan will provide some guidelines to shape the decisions we will be making in the future about where we want our community to go," Bowman said. "It takes a look at where we've been, where we're at and, most importantly, where we want to be."
The document states general goals regarding land use and character, transportation and connectivity, economic health, environment and resiliency and civic spaces.
A set of proposed initiatives and action plans are proscribed to help meet those general goals, Bowman said.
The drafts of the updated community plan and the civic spaces and places plan are available at the Growing on Tradition page on the city's website, www.grandviewheights.org.