BCDT: Planning Memo (Joe, Jonny, Kyle, Miles, & Jairran)

The BCDT opted to attend the Brewery District planning commission meeting on October 4th. It was in a fairly accessible government building located on 111 Front St. It is important to note, however, that the building required a government ID and check-in in order to attend the meeting — in some ways this could be seen as a barrier to entry.

Upon arrival, the room was not very well populated. While there were 96 seats available, less than 15 were filled, including those who intended to present to the commission and our team. The room was laid out in a very typical manner, with the commissioners at a large desk at the front, and a 2-microphone desk facing the commissioners for people to give presentations.

The procedure was surprisingly informal, involving a basic opening statement and the first item on the agenda almost immediately being brought up afterward.

The first item was fairly straight forward. A Holiday Inn Express was replacing another hotel and there was a short debate on signage. One would be a freestanding sign that replaced an older sign of the same style, and the other a mounted sign. The freestanding sign technically went against the zoning ordinances of the Brewery District, but the commissioners seemed happy to help with the hotel representative to make sure it could be grandfathered in because it was replacing a sign. The other sign was rejected until further manufacturing information could be obtained, as all the presenter had brought with him was a visual draft with no formal technical specifications. Overall, this process only took around 20 minutes and was settled quickly.  

The second case was the truly interesting one. Three men, working for a developer, sat across the from commissioners. They were pitching modifications to a two unit residential area in the center of the Brewery District. The first order of business was by far the most contentious yet: parking.

Each unit was listed to have two spaces. Using hand and digital drafts on a board, the three developers presented how it was to be laid out. Immediately one of the commissioners began to object, claiming it would not be possible for larger vehicles such as pickup trucks to fit in the space. This was the first argument that started among the commissioners.

Several of them took the side of the developers and several took the side of their fellow commissioner. The problem seemed less to do with strict regulation, but instead with personal preference in design. Several argued that this was just a reality of owning a home in the area and that if you wanted a large vehicle, you would not live in that unit. On the other hand, the main objector argued that you cannot expect tennants to change transportation choices based on where they live — which seems somewhat antithetical to good planning.

The solution that the board agreed upon was to petition the city for an eight foot curb cut and expand the space. The developers did not like this, as it would further delay the construction, and a curb cut could be difficult to attain if the curb was made from historic sandstone. Thus, more debate ensued.

After nearly 30 minutes of entirely informal bickering, two options were settled upon. First, the curb cut, and second, listing the unit as zero parking, even if two spots are technically available. The developers seemed unhappy with this decision, but accepted it as it was their only choice. After a vote, the commissioners agreed both were acceptable for the brewery district.  

Even through arguing and disagreements, the room felt generally cooperative. The board had the best interests of the developer and the district in mind — they simply disagreed on fundamental design principles. This wide range of opinions most likely helps to build a resilient community rather than a single-minded one. For instance, the main objector, mentioned earlier, was a landscape architect with good experience in the field and had worked heavily on parking projects in the past. Even though he was only one with a dissenting opinion, the other members and the developers took his opinion very seriously.

Overall the meeting was a good experience, while it did take over 45 minutes to come to a conclusion on 2 parking spaces, it showed how planners, developers, and citizens all are accounted for in commission meetings. It also was an excellent look into some of the disorganization and informality that can occur even within the formal confines of a government building.

attached picture for reference:

Blog 5 – Finding Houses

Plan’s Goals

The University District Plan focuses on the how the district is currently and gives recommendations for the future. These recommendations contain guidelines for land use and design guidelines, including height, FAR(ratio) and setbacks.

The current conditions covers what the neighborhoods, and historic areas are of the district, plus the previous planning of the district. The current conditions also hold the existing land use and zoning, from residential to commercial and industrial, and the population density. The population density was interesting because you can see how student housing is a lot of people in buildings. These land use conditions also include zoning, current demographics, and transportation. The land use has about 25% to OSU and most businesses along High st.

The end of current conditions has what the current issues are, so that land use policies can be updated. These issues are how the district was developed, with the influx of students, how student rented housing are more packed than other housing, this causes problems with parking and traffic. The last issue is how complex it is to regulate land use.

The recommendations for land use focuses around OSU. with principles of a Floor to Area Ratio, easy transportation, limiting parking, green practices, high density around high street and new developments fit in with the surrounding neighborhood.

The main difference with land use is that high street area will now be regional mixed use, and that there is standards for FAR, building height, parking and landscaping for each zone. There is also more standards for corner stores and natural resources and recreation. The design guidelines contain information on historic buildings, setbacks, door and window location, lighting, landscaping, parking, signs, dining and art. Capital improvements have the what funding should be directed towards with parks and nature being top priority.

 

View of The Plan

The Plan seems to be very realistic and will affect this team as much of the plan is focused around OSU. I feel like the plan is going to improve the university district and help create a sense of unity within different spaces in this district.This unity will be achieved with the design guidelines, with the FAR ration, setbacks and heights in particular. I also like that the development of high street area is now regional mixed use, because this will mean that we can have more diversity in the type of stores and opportunities around high street. The focus on natural places is also good because having nature in the city is something very important to this team.

 

Connecting The Plan to Reality

Through the eyes of an OSU student it is easy to see how housing and the area around high has changed. The plan had a focus on making the area around high a high density mixed use zone, and limiting the use of cars for shopping. This can be seen with the making of pricey student housing, target, and with some bars on high have been torn down, most likely to create more diverse options on high. There is also a lot of improvements happening for student housing near summit and 4th. The many there is a less seen in the non-automobile transportation, many sidewalks are damaged, and biking is still not a great option, with there not being room for cars and bikes in most places, so you get backups from bikes. So overall, you can see the goals of this plan in action.

 

Does The Plan Address Issues

I think that the plan addresses the land use issues I have seen around the district. This can be seen with the focus on student housing, parking/traffic, and the shopping experience. The student housing issue is being taken care of with FAR ratios, and encouraging non-car transportation. Parking and traffic are also addressed with non-car transportation to limit the need for parking. The shopping experience has been addressed with a focus on setbacks so more shopping by foot is encouraged.

 

Improvements to the Plan

 

One improvement that we would add would be an inclusion of a easy to understand summary or other format for the public and non planners to better understand the plan without having to read 88 pages. The next improvement to the plan is to include more about the homeless and poverty problem in the district and recommendations on how to improve this problem. Another improvement I am unsure if able to control at all, but focusing that the district has a good mix of different stores in each area. We have a lot of bars on high and think having more diverse shopping locations would allow more choice. Particular focus on corner stores, for example making sure there isn’t only fast food as the only food option around. The finally improvement is a greater focus on biking and walking in greater detail. This would include what sidewalks need repaired, what is the ideal sidewalk for each zone, and what are current biking lanes, where should protected biking lanes go.

Knowlton State Warriors | Blog 5 University District Plan

Introduction

“Neighborhood plans address future land use, urban design, and capital improvements. They provide an opportunity for community stakeholders to help shape and direct the pattern of growth and development in their area. Two primary ways a neighborhood plan is used are to guide neighborhood and city review of development proposals and to inform future investments in the area.”

Existing Conditions

“The Existing Conditions section provides a summary of the planning area’s data and trends that inform physical planning and change. The report reviews the area’s physical attributes, including land use, zoning, transportation, and environmental resources. Current and forecasted demographics, economic trends, and a historical context of the planning area are examined as well.”

12 neighborhoods make up the University District. There are 4 historic districts. There were previous plans such as a design for High Street. 49 percent of the land is used for residential, and 39 percent is institutional. Most of the land on High Street is commercial, and most of the land North, East, and South of OSU is residential.

“The Urban Commercial Overlay… establishes additional standards and requirements on top of underlying zoning to commercial properties.”

The document then goes over the demographics, tax increment finance areas, transport networks, and environmental resources.

Over the last few years, denser development such as student beds and parking has impacted the University District.

Recommendations

“The Plan Recommendations section addresses land use, urban design, and capital improvements. The development principles, policies, guidelines and strategies are an outgrowth of existing conditions analysis, stakeholder input and staff analysis. They respond to identified priorities and are consistent with overall city development-related policies. Each development principle is followed by supporting policies, guidelines and strategies. Capital improvement recommendations will serve as the area’s Urban Infrastructure Recovery Fund (UIRF) priorities.”

The document goes over Floor Area Ratio and Land Use Plans. The Land Use Plan of each street/house is laid out on a map. The mixed-use zoning ideas are explained.

Natural Resource and Parks and Recreation Facilities are explained.

The design principles are then explained, including Historic Resources and building design, and landscaping.

Then Residential Development ideas are explained, along with parking lots, garages, Graphics, and art.

Next, Capital Improvements, or improvements to neighborhood infrastructure are laid out.

Implementation

“The most effective way to implement the provisions of a neighborhood plan is through the consistent and unified advocacy of area residents and businesses working in concert with the city of Columbus and other stakeholders. The most typical mechanism for plan implementation is the review of development proposals for consistency with the plan. Additionally, the plan can be used proactively to seek investment in the area, advocate for neighborhood issues, pursue grant funding and guide capital improvements. As indicated, this plan will serve as the area’s list of UIRF priority projects.”

  • The land use recommendations in this plan are actually extremely agreeable to me. There are a lot of positive points and I feel like if the recommendations are followed progression will be viewed as primarily positive. The first good thing is the focusing of development on the campus area and not as much the surrounding area, this allows people who live here and aren’t involved with OSU a little space and separation from it. Another good thing is the focus on density in order to make the district very walkable. I also like the mixed land use goals and variety of land use encouraged. The different usages of intensity of that usage allows for diversity and several different feelings depending on where you are in the district. It also allows you to live, shop, eat, etc. all very close together. Finally, there is a good point in there about encouraging sustainable building and green practices. I think every recommendation these days should contain a sustainable element.
  • The plan for The University District describes the land use objectives for the area and they are pretty consistent to what has been going on recently with new developments. For example, the new developments on High Street are designated for Regional Mixed Use which is the case for all of those developments including the new Target which also has apartments above the store. They do also state that there must be a park or recreational facility within one-half mile of all residents within the district all within the City’s Parks and Recreation Master Plan. I think there are definitely more parks that could be put in to increase the green space in the district as it is very residential and commercial outside of the University campus. They state that High Street and Lane Avenue will continue to be the main corridor for mixed use and densest development, which is line with recent developments. They have a pretty strong sense of conservation in the plan and they say that any building with significant impact on the historic fabric of the district must be rehabilitated and maintained, but I do think that knocking down building after building on High Street doesn’t necessarily follow this guideline.
  • According to the principles behind the land use of the University District, the goal is focused in the proper direction. Where mixed use buildings are said to be focused on main street and walking up and down that particular area it is easily noticeable of the mixed use of the buildings for both commercial and residential. It also addresses the importance of accessibility by walking, biking and cars, all of which are a major priority and easily noticeable by the roads, and the walkways across the campus. Parking also is not dominating the University District, with the use of parking garages limiting the area and composing it towards the sky in a much denser area. The area is also utilizing green spaces and is conserving the existing land and feel of the parks and natural environment. Thus, the guiding principles seem to be shaping the University towards the right direction and the outcome is noticeable.
  • The recommendations we have regarding the University District Plan are focused in the area of transportation and walking about the area.  The third guiding principle discusses how people should still be able to move around by walking, car, transit, and bicycle.  All of these ways of transportation are available, but some can be more difficult and less safe than others.  The major concern we have is crossing high street when walking to and from campus or other areas.  There is a lot of traffic on high street all the time and it is very unsafe to cross the street a lot of the time.  One solution to this problem would be to incorporate a couple of walking bridges across high street at major crossing points to reduce accidents and traffic.  Another recommendation for this principle of the plan is to incorporate more bike racks along high street.  The plan wants the use of bicycles to increase, but there are not many bike racks along retail buildings to leave them at while visiting.  The last recommendation is to improve bus stops.  Many of the bus stops have been improved, but others are still simply a post.  To encourage transit use in the area, better bus stops for people to wait at would be a good start.

 

 

Blog Post 5: BCDT(Joe, Jairran, Jonny, Kyle, Miles)

1) The goals and objectives for the University District are to provide land use recommendations for the planning area that serve as a framework for zoning and other land use decisions, to provide guidelines for the design of new development, and to inform capital improvement priorities. The University District’s first residency dates back to the early 1800s. The main existing goal of the district is to preserve history, and it is to include and upkeep the surrounding parks( Iuka, Tuttle, etc.). The future plans for the area are to focus on landscaping(buffering), implementing the idea of “floor area ratio”, and incorporating mixed-use development.

2) I feel that the land use goals and objectives are going to be a success to the University District in Columbus Ohio. The use of “floor area ratios” based on the size of the property and delegating a certain percentage of the land to leave as landscaping/green space. This will be a very beneficial concept used to preserve nature as more new construction and money pour into the city. I feel that Columbus is ahead of the curve so to speak in terms of preserving the city and the nature around it, and the implementation of these new plans will only benefit the city further. Finally, I feel that the University District will continue to prioritize preserving parks and natural settings while still accommodating to the heavy traffic in the area.

3) The recent developments in the University district are mostly in accordance with the guidelines set by the neighborhood plan, especially along High Street. A large focus of the plan was the development of high-density, mixed-use buildings along High, which can be seen in the construction of the new Target store, the new Chipotle, and the apartments above them. Another emphasis of the plan was to enhance the shopping experience for the pedestrian by providing several shops and on the ground level, with a focus on non-automobile related commercial establishments. Again, this is evident in the recent openings of several new stores on High. The new developments in the University District also reflect the building height guidelines, with the tallest buildings around campus on Lane and High. The plan does mention promoting both foot and bike traffic. In terms of foot traffic, several sidewalks in the University district remain heavily damaged. On the other hand, large parking structures aren’t very prevalent in the area (which is also specified in the plan), which discourages the use of cars in the neighborhood. Infrastructure for bikes appears to be lacking in this area. Although there are markings on many major roads for bike use, only Summit and 4th have barriered bike lanes for safe bike travel. Lastly, the plan notes a desire to make parks and open spaces heavily connected to the neighborhood and easy to access. The neighborhood parks along the Olentangy River are interconnected by the many trails along the river, which also encourages walking or biking over driving.

4) I believe the plan addresses the issues that are currently vibrant within the District. The focus on floor area ratios and using residency intensities as a driving factor to preserve greenery around the area. Also, they offered a plethora of recommendations in order to combat issues that may arise in the future regarding the territory. I think that their use of rezoning, variances, and council variances will dictate the ultimate success of the plan.

5) The first advice we have for the plan is not actually related to the content of the plan – but rather the format. While planning a city is often done by planners and other experienced and or educated individuals, it is without a doubt a community effort. These communities are typically made of a variety of people who work a variety of jobs and enjoy a variety of other activities. What they almost all have in common, however, is a lack of free time. Even when citizens do have free time, reading through and understanding an 88 page PDF can be tedious. Creating a robust and interactive website that includes timelines, graphics, links to ongoing projects, and more, would be a far more accessible way to present the plan to the community. This would likely bolster interest in the general progress of the city. The second change we would like to see in the plan is it lacks cohesion of a neighborhood. Most of the design guidelines heavily emphasize that businesses should not implement art, extensions, and dining that can be seen/interfere with other areas. While this is a good guideline to ensure businesses do not overextend into other plots, it fails to provide help on how to create good design — and more importantly how to unite several businesses in an area to create a single University District. Finally, the section on corner stores seems subpar. Mixed use areas are often beneficial, and once again the 4 guides provided simply say what not to do as opposed to promoting a healthier and better community. We would recommend going further in depth on how negative and positive impacts can be analyzed. For instance, a small produce grocer that provides fresh fruit to neighboring houses is a good, whereas a liquor store is less beneficial.

 

Blog 5 – Elephants

The University District plan has clear and distinct guidelines for the developments within the 2.9 square miles of space. The area is separated into land set aside for “Institutional” use, “Parks and Recreation” use, and residential use. Currently, the plan recommends small pockets of university-owned “Institution” land throughout the more residential areas of the University District, but from observations of developments throughout the history of the Ohio State University, they could rapidly expand in the future. The plan has set a goal to use the land they were given in the most efficient way possible for not only the university but also for the students and other residents within the boundaries of the University District.

The plan presented in the university district plan seems inclusive to everyone within the University district area, whether you’re an Ohio State student, a child attending any of the neighboring schools or just visiting the city. Schools and parks within the Weinland Park neighborhood have been updated along with homes. A new library has been added to High Street, which is beneficial to anyone in the surrounding area. High Street has been revitalized with many new stores, restaurants and the short north is consistently adapting to please its consistent visitors and bring new ones. The plans presented in the University district plan promotes inclusivity by having something for everyone within its 2.9 miles.

One thing you see the most in the district that follows the guidelines are all the new mixed-use residential buildings. Now some things are a little different, but they are moving at a fast rate and you’re able to see that almost daily. You can see from the plan and in person that they are putting the highest densities on High Street between Lane and Fifth, just like the plan. You’re able to see the more walkable stores and fast food restaurants. There are plans to make Columbus a friendlier walking city through more crosswalks and bike lanes and wider sidewalks. Everything is planned within walking distance, so you don’t need to drive from place to place. Columbus is using overall greener spaces or setting goals to use greener ways for transportation.  Columbus is constantly updating and already has very sufficient public transit in the area. Also, one of the goals was to get rid of parking in certain areas and they have done that, but not to the extent they had hoped. In some areas, there is still street parking that causes traffic mostly on High Street. Overall, we believe that most of the goals are being accomplished or within reach.

The Pricks: Blog 5

 

The goal of the University District is to make sure that the neighborhood improves through urban design and future land use. The University District is also a way that the community can be involved in the development of their area. The main goal of the University District plan is to guide the board on deciding if proposed changes are appropriate for the area. The University District Planning area is approximately 2.9 square miles. While the University District is a framework for plan proposals it cannot solve issues such as health care and public safety as these fall outside of the built and natural environment. The University District zone is currently subdivided into 12 sections such as OSU, Glen Echo, Old north Columbus, etc. This area has developed over the last 200 years in relation to the proximity and growth of the Ohio State University. Within these 12 neighborhoods there are 4 that are historic districts. These four has varied, stricter standards when it comes to renovating the properties within these districts. One current plan that the University District has implemented is A Plan for High Street: Creating a 21st Century Main Street (2002). This plans goal is to help improve the public realm and revitalize 19 High Street locations with focus on Gateway. This plan has improved the gateway area and allowed it to become a hotspot for daytime and evening attractions.

 

The land use goals presented by the University District Plan are reasonable and retain the value of urban space. The FAR of 1:1 is smart to have in the university district because the area can become over populated with the return of college students after the summer and maximum housing is necessary to hold Ohio States students. While the adjustments to FAR are smart the changes will require a Code Change which is something that can take a substantial amount of time. The minimization of parking is a good thing for those living within the University District and walking distance, but I worry that with such little parking people will be discouraged from visiting the area from farther away locations. The 5th goal about striving to be a sustainable community and utilizing green building practice is a great idea and will keep this area current and a clean place people want to be.

 

The recent development on the southeast corner of High St and Lane Ave is consistent with the land use goals of the new plan. A High-density apartments just went up with commercial space on the first level. This follows the projected use of the area and follows the height requirements too. The new plan encourages parking garages to be built and this building also has a parking garage built underneath the residential spaces on the first two stories.

 

The plan addresses the minimization of green space around campus. With the implementation of FAR the green space is accounted for on properties and is strongly encouraged for new developed sites. There are also areas of land that have remained unused for some time and this land plan will help to define those spaces, so development may start on them and the land will not be vacant longer.

 

One suggestion our group has is more focuses outlines of sidewalks within the Neighborhood Mixed Use area. This land use category does not touch on sidewalk requirements for the buildings and while there are codes that state it including it within the land proposal will help to make this topic less obscure. To properly encourage walking and biking adequate sidewalks and bike lanes are necessary to make pedestrians comfortable.

Blog 5 Comprehensive Plan

Names: Jack Barron, Sam Jallaq, Haley Jaynes, Gabrielle Smith & John Smith  

The University District presented an overall succinct plan with many goals, some of which were well detailed and others were to broad. The most prominent issues were: concentrating development around OSU, incorporating more public art, redeveloping green spaces, adding housing and increase parking regulation. In regard to land use, we were impressed that 87% of the district is used for housing and academics, 48% of which is dedicated to housing, which is a necessity for the areas dense population. One of the focuses of the plan was to increase mixed use buildings. Through the addition of Target and Amazon, the planners have addressed the area’s growing population and their mixed building goal. Although new mixed use housing addresses the population density, it fails to address the needs of its demographic. The median income in the University District is $17,927 and 41% of its population makes less than $15,000, both of which are below the poverty line. Pivoting to one success of the district plan is the improvement of pedestrian access. Students are able to live and work in the area without needing access to cars. However, circumstances for transit riders/commuters and bicyclists haven’t improved at the rate promised. Also, the increase of permit parking has reduced the number of spots able to be used by visitors, putting even more strain on all the alternative transit options, further highlighting the need to reach the rate of improvement promised. Finally, no attempt has been made to make the area more environmentally friendly or beautify green spaces, which is disheartening. The University District touched on many of its goals and focuses, however, it needs to invest further in certain areas.

As aspiring planners, we formulated a few ideas of how to improve the district. One of the simpler ideas is to increase the number of recycling bins. Addressing the parking and congestion issue, we would like to see the creation of bus only lanes (alike to those in Europe) and bike lanes. Additionally as highlighted above, the district plan is pushing out lower-income students by not viewing affordable housing as a necessity, which in turn lessens the possibility of academic success. Also, this development is taking away the charm of uniqueness of the area. Local businesses need to be saved. They give students a sense of place, and they have more power to address the needs of the local population. Many of the shortfalls illuminated earlier in the blog were found to have nice solutions from our group’s teamwork.

The Upperclassmen: Blog 5

  1. The University District addresses the future of urban design, capital improvements, and land use in the city of Columbus. The University District is utilized to guide neighborhood and city review of development proposals and inform future investments in the region. It also provides land use recommendations for the planning area that establishes the framework for zoning. Land use defines how property and/or a building is utilized. In order for neighborhoods to be sustainable for future generations, it is significant for a variety of land uses to be provided. A primary goal is to focus on the higher intensity development on the Ohio State University campus. In addition, there is a goal to encourage low intensity development in areas away from the campus.

2. A lot of the land that is used is used for residential use where 89 percent is renter occupied. The Ohio State University is placed alongside the olentangy river and the river itself is used as a park or green space. Tuttle park, as well as Echo Glenn park serve as green space for the campus. What is nice, is that there is is a strip of mixed use area going right down the middle of the map. This is nice because it sort of makes a center of entertainment for both the more residential part of the university for the university side, so students can come from class to find entertainment and meals or they can come from the more residential side as well.

3. One of the primary goals is for intense development on the physical campus of OSU. This is absolutely being fulfilled and actively being worked on. Over the past four years, the campus has changed tremendously. North campus as a whole has completely transformed. They have added many new dorms as well as other components such as  the clock tower. On south campus, there has also been an addition of new dorms, but overall the development on south campus has more been focused on the aesthetic aspect. For example, they spent a couple years remodeling mirror lake and redoing the creamery. They also have worked on modernizing some of the older buildings, such as the relatively new student union. While the goal of high-intensity building on campus building is only one of many, this is a clear example of how the university has done a pretty good job at following the plan.

4. The comprehensive plan contains an entire section of land-use issues, most of which is devoted to the issues with high density parking in low density residential neighborhoods. The problem is that many of the neighborhoods were built for families, long before Ohio State became such a densely populated school. Now that students are packed into houses at greater numbers than originally intended, parked cars have clogged the thin streets near student housing. The next section of the plan is dedicated to recommendations for future land-use. One specific recommendation is to decrease the area that a building will take up in a specified lot for developments near High Street. This tactic eases parking overflow for shoppers near High Street, and residents of upper floor apartments in mixed-use buildings. However, this tactic does not ease parking overflow near housing, because there will always be an incentive for a student to park for free near their house, rather than paid parking further away.    

5. There are a couple of suggestions for things that can be added and improved in the University District Plan. One is that there can be more of an initiative to implement small businesses on High Street along the Ohio State campus. As more corporations ranging from fast food to retail stores such as target buy/rent property on High Street, it becomes more difficult for small businesses to buy/rent along this area of property. Second is that the University District Plan can focus on adding a more efficient transit system from the Ohio State campus to downtown. Unless if one has the access to a vehicle, it can be difficult to commute around the campus and the city of Columbus.   

CRP4A- Blog 5

The goal of the University District Plan is “to provide land use regulations and recommendations that serve as a framework for zoning and other land use decisions”. In addition, the plan is to “provide guidelines for the design of new development”, and “inform capital improvement strategies”. The objective for future land use is to have the areas closest to campus be the most dense, with that density decreasing the further away from campus you get. This is similar to the current land use of the university district and the immediate surrounding areas where the plan is looking to expand into. This is implemented through housing regulations as well as building type, with mixed-use, higher density and commercial buildings located closest to campus, and smaller, single family residences located further away. The plan also strives to create a sustainable environment through bike path and sidewalk considerations.

 Many of the land use goals highlighted in the University District Plan are already being implemented. These goals have been beneficial to creating a better environment for people living within the University District. The mixed use buildings that are along High Street provide students with many walkable commercial options. However, the popularity and density of this area has lead to an increase in luxury apartments and high rent, which negatively affects students who cannot afford to live closer to campus due to rising costs. If students cannot afford to live closer to the heart of the University District, their access to transit and walkable/bikeable areas also decreases. The University Plan also highlights the importance of continuing to develop walkable, bikeable, accessible areas. Accessibility is an important goal to focus on for the continuing development of this district. Overall, the goals stated in the Land Use Plan for the University District strive to implement a plan that will benefit the students that live in this area.

For the most part, developments along High Street in the University District seem to be consistent with the land use goals the plan set out to achieve. The plan calls for high-intensity, mixed use and commercial development along the areas of High Street closest to the university and lower-intensity residential development the further you get away from the university. The current development pattern on High Street follows those guidelines. All developments along High Street seem to conform to the floor area ratio, height limits, and setback limits expressed in the plan. Parking for residential on High Street is limited to 0.5 spaces per bed and that seems to hold true as High Street sees a lot more pedestrian and bicycle traffic than other areas of the University District and is an important corridor for COTA riders. All of this helps promote a more walkable and liveable district, which is one of the goals this plan hopes to reach.

The University District Plan does address a land-use issue which has been identified by students in the class. For example, Ohio State has a large population of students who live on campus with no access to a car. Because of this, one of the goals of the University District plan is to keep not only institutional use buildings, but also necessary mixed use buildings (such as convenience stores, restaurants, entertainment, etc.) within walking distance for students. One of the most recent implementations of this was the development of the Target on the corner of 15th ave and High st. This store provides students with accessible access to various necessities not available anywhere else in the University District area. The plan for the district is to keep everything within walking/ bicycling distance when at all possible  which has been done well thus far.

The regional mixed use approach is appropriate because High St. in itself can be considered a ‘Main Street’. The plans seem to address the idea of mixed use providing residential and commercial use buildings along High St. As a group we feel that the idea of the plan was appropriate but the outcome has not been. Many students desire to live along High St. but have been priced out. If residential use is proposed it is important to understand the residents who will occupy the area. However, the commercial aspect has been successful and many businesses seem to be doing well. Along with this, we agree that it would be convenient for students who live just off campus to have more corner stores available to them. While the plan allows for them, it does not recommend more. We feel that as they are un-invasive but very productive for those who live around them, we would like more corner stores to be implemented.

HI-5, Blog #5

1. Goals and Objectives:

The University District Plan’s main objective is to improve the form and function of the community. According to the plan, this is done by addressing future land use, urban design, and capital improvements. The goal is to guide the neighborhood’s future development and investments. Land use is a very important aspect for neighborhood plans. Currently, there are twelve neighborhoods agglomerated in the University District. The two main uses of land within this district are residential and institutional. Residential uses range to up to 48.6% of the district, while institutional ranges up to 38.5%. Other land uses, such as parks and recreation or commercial, are low in percent compared to residential and institutional land uses. This is mainly due to Ohio State’s growing student population and academic buildings. To plan for future land uses, one must address issues currently at hand. The University District Plan addresses development patterns, including the impacts of student housing and parking. The plan suggests utilizing floor area ratios for development. The plan outlines how development should occur at a higher rate around Institutional and Mixed-Use areas, then decrease development intensity going into more residential areas. In Table 3.1, the plan outlines floor area ratios, building height, landscape areas, and parking for low to high residential areas, neighborhood mixed uses, and regional mixed uses. We can examine these patterns today. For example, the increase of apartment buildings and chain businesses on High Street. Do you agree with the current land uses of the University District? What do you think can be improved?

2. The goals presented in the ‘land use’ section of this recommendations booklet go from improving not only the lives of students in the University District but the overall structural well-being of the district’s nature. The district’s nature is known to be a lively part of the Columbus due to a rather younger population, at large, taking to the streets. Whether that be for commuting to class, social occasions, or just for a stroll around the campus, the amount of traffic the district faces is rather intense. To lessen this, the plan distinctly adheres to the idea of balancing the auto traffic, allowing for more parking and safer roads, and a structural rehaul of the infrastructure for safer bike lanes and parking garages. As a student and a commuter, I believe this specific goal will greatly benefit not only myself but those who live in the area as well. The parking for ‘non-residential’ use is vital when considering the nature of Ohio State. People do not only just live around campus, but come from all corners of Columbus, or further. It is imperative that these goals are reached to allow for safer transportation methods and proper parking situations.

3. The consistency of the planning shown within this packet has definitely been apparent on the field. The land use plan details how residential, from low to high, should divide up their land use. Parking specifically, as pointed at from the 2nd question, is important. The medium to higher intensity residential plots allows for double to a triple stacking of parking on the plot. This is clearly seen in the lots behind housing units of Lane Ave. The lots here are considered to be called ‘overflow’ lots, as shown in the picture below. The housing units do not entirely take up space in the rear end of their plots. For better use, they were turned into parking lots for not only the residents of the housing units but for commuters as well.

4. As far as I think about the plan of land use in the university, they have done a great job incorporating the use of mixed-use buildings. The layout and the distribution just make the high street a great place for people to walk around and live. The residential area combined with the comprehension of 3 types of density gives a reliable concept for planners to balance the residents and the land use in Columbus. However, the city still has the issue to work on. As the plan says, the lack of probability and the accessibility to the public transportation makes many people annoying. Planners should work on the transportation and in order to combine the whole community together. The economic and the citizens would be both glad to have it and raise the sense of happiness in Columbus.

5. In the Natural Resources section of the Land Use category, it states that ‘the stream buffer shown on the Land Use Plan is intended to recognize the property owner’s right to develop the property in a manner consistent with the existing regulatory framework and recommended land use, but ensures that an appropriate stream buffer is provided’. Understanding what is stated, I feel that allowing for current land owner’s, who on most occasions may be college students, to develop the property should be taken carefully. This is a natural resource, a waterway to be exact. And as fragile as they are, there should be more caution for these waterways. I believe the planners should tighten up the idea of who can develop and who cannot develop the areas around waters. There should be stricter rules implemented to ensure the safety of such natural resources and the preservation of nature all around. This is where I feel that the planners lacked in their entirety with regards to their recommendations.