The question of what to do with the 3.75 acre plot of land located in the Bridge Street district on Dale Dr. has multiple factors that influenced the decision we made. The Zoning of this parcel is technically BSD Scioto River Neighborhood District, but it is surrounded by office residential, commercial, and public zoning as well. The prime location of the parcel at the intersection of Bridge St. and The Scioto River probably has something to do with the convergence of all of these zones. The site seems prime for an attractive mixed-use project. The Scioto River is in-navigable and essentially economically useless, but its intersection with Bridge St. creates valuable land which the current use is under utilizing.
The Scioto And Olentangy Rivers are the foundation of Columbus, and Downtown, The Short North, OSU, and Dublin are all located by their banks and connected by their confluence. All of these areas have unique qualities that have resulted in outstanding development and prosperity in the past 20 years, but they are all separated and not in comfortable walking distance. The only way to access these areas currently is for everyone to drive their gas guzzling cars in traffic to each destination and crowd the area by parking their cars. Which is stupidly inefficient and an old idea of 20th century suburban life that the population’s preference is shifting away from. Also, many attractions in these areas are restaurants and bars that serve alcohol, and while everyone can pretend like people do not drunk drive, that is an event that happens too often. This system forces people to choose between staying close by and drinking, driving to a destination and not drinking, or driving to an area and then drunk driving home. We as a city need to learn from J.T. Barrett because great people do make mistakes, but if he had an alternative mode of transportation that could take him home from where the fun was…
The Aqueducts: Columbus’s first passenger rail line that connects the city’s points of interest along the Scioto on Olentangy Rivers. The largest problem with setting up a railway in Columbus is that there is already infrastructure such as roads, buildings, sewers, etc. everywhere in the way of any desirable path. Well, Columbus has been set up on the Olentangy and Scioto Rivers and many key points of the city are already on the banks of these barely used rivers. Obviously the rivers themselves would not serve as a transport for the trains. Large arches spanning over the river at intervals deemed structurally manageable would lift the railways above the river and frame it. The architectural style will be a tribute to Rome’s greatest innovation- The Aqueduct. Four key areas would need to be connected at the initial phase, the Arena district, the Short North, Ohio State University, and Dublin’s new Riverside District. Each of these areas have private and public entities that would be financially interested in connecting their business to the foot traffic a train station will bring, and each area has unique qualities that they can implore in their stations to symbolize their goals. The general format for each station would be.. an elevated structure to match the height of the rail lines which funnels into the centralized boarding hub for the train system. Underneath the structure would be a sturdy foundation that stored ample parking. The foundation should take the ground space and elevate it, similar to how Elis S. Chesbrough lifted the skyline of Chicago to install it’s first sewer system. On this lifted structure will be a mixed use space that is a central train station surrounded by a retail center, community center, and recreational park space.
Each area can tailor their station to their needs and desires, which the city of Dublin can use to fit their needs as the most suburban of the key areas. The historic district in Dublin is a a very desirable spot and has potential to be a great place, but it has to compete with the many attractions down town has to offer. The young professional crowd that Dublin is trying to allure is always going to have that draw to downtown, and no number of “cool office parks” or breweries will change that. What it does have to offer is a quaint area with a stable economy that is a nice place to become a real adult, so Dublin should stop trying to create attractions, and rather focus on connecting it’s cool new Riverside District with the existing great attractions that OSU, the Short North, and downtown already possess.