The existing site of Trolley Market is situated south of Franklin Park at the intersection Oak St. and Kelton Ave. This area on the east side of Columbus is mostly residential and right by one of the nice parks of Columbus, so there is not much of a need for more housing or another park. We wanted to create a new purposeful use for this area that was not too intrusive to the existing infrastructure. One of our member’s home town has a local restaurant that is situated right in the middle of a residential area that she was very fond of. The locals in her town have adopted the restaurant into their culture and it is their preferred place to gather. In the northeast corner, we want to repurpose the one building into a locally themed restaurant and bar. We want to make these two separate buildings connected by a patio area. Our restaurant, “Trolley’s”, would be a small business that will add local attraction to the area. We are making it a priority to utilize the buildings already there instead of rebuilding new structures to instill historical integrity in the area. Plotting a restaurant on this site seemed like a good idea to us because there aren’t many other dining options in the immediate area.
The southwest building that it already there will be turned into a fresh food market called The Trolley Market. Like the northwest structure, we will be simply restructuring the building that is already there. We will, however be adding a greenhouse on the east side of the building to keep up with our produce production in the winter. One of our priorities was being able to provide fresh healthy food to residents in the surrounding area. By creating a garden, a market, and a greenhouse, we have created multiple options for local residents to reach these needs. We found inspiration for our market area from the Quincy Market in Boston, Massachusetts. Clearly Trolley Market will be on a much smaller scale but will resemble the vendor style farmer’s market.
We’ve created a garden area using approximately one-third of the site. Here we will grow fresh produce to be sold both in the market place, as well as be used in the restaurant. All of our areas on site are easily accessible, and have paths to get through the garden and to arrive to each section. We designated the area between the restaurant and the garden for a parking lot. We have one-way entrance and exit lanes to make traffic flow easier. We plan to incorporate landscaping around the perimeter of our site to make it look appealing.
As mentioned, we want to use as much of the existing structures as possible. Understanding the age and condition of the property, much of it will need to be refurbished. The historic value is very important to us, so the size of the buildings will be determined by pre-existing conditions. The redevelopment of brownfields is often something that is overlooked, but when done properly, can allow developers to save/maintain historic places. By saving these structures, we are creating a link to the past of when The Old Trolley Barn was in use.
We believe that the neighbors to the site will be happy with what is being done with the property. Our development proposal is in our opinion non-intrusive, and will incorporate community involvement.