Taylor Farm Park: New Albany City Council approves spending $500K on design, improvements

Gary Seman Jr.
ThisWeek group
New Albany City Council approved spending $500,000 for design work and improvements to the nearly 100-acre tract of land. The 2021 capital budget has $1.75 million, of which $800,000 was awarded by a Clean Ohio Fund grant, for the acquisition of the land.

New Albany City Council took a step forward in making Taylor Farm Park a reality.

Council on Jan. 5 approved spending $500,000 for phase 1 design work and improvements to the nearly 100-acre tract of land.

On a related note, the 2021 capital budget has $1.75 million, of which $800,000 was awarded by a Clean Ohio Fund grant, for the acquisition of the land.

Phase 1, which is expected to be bid out in the first quarter, calls 3.5 miles of multi-purpose trails, seating areas, landscaping and parking across the expansive site, which is bordered on the west by Rocky Fork Creek. Work is expected to wrap up by the end of the year, according to Adrienne Joly, director of administrative services for the city. 

“It’s a very scenic piece of ground,” Joly said. “It’s big enough that it will feel like a Metro Park that it will have woodland areas, open areas and wetlands.”

There is a homestead and barn on the property but it is unclear whether they will be preserved, said Scott McAfee, spokesman for the city.

The tract is roughly bounded by Rocky Fork Creek, Dublin-Granville Road, Harlem Road and the state Route 161 expressway.

“It has significant historic but also ecologic value to the community,” Joly said. “It’s been a farm dating back into the 1800s. This will be a destination park for the entire community.”

Another attractive aspect of the land is that it comes within a stone’s throw of New Albany’s town center, so those who are enjoying the outdoors can enjoy the amenities of the commercial district, Joly said.

“It’s a really easy bike ride or a walk between this park and what we call our village center,” she said.

Joly said it hasn't been determined how many phases there will be in the project, adding the park will be a work in progress, with new facilities being added as capital funds allow.

The park also is within a mile of Rose Run Park, creating even more outdoor recreational opportunities, McAfee said.

“I think this park has the potential to not just be a connector for us inside New Albany but also for others to connect to New Albany,” he said.

gseman@thisweeeknews.com

@ThisWeekGary