Fall 2007 Morse Road Special Improvement District

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Newsletter with updates in 2007 on the Morse Road improvements. Love what you see here? Go to www.tinyurl.com/1161ReedCircleDrive

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Fall 2007 Morse Road Special Improvement District

  1. 1. Fall 2007 Newsletter of the Morse Road Special Improvement District (SID) “The City could not have completed this first phase of the Morse NOTICE OF ANNUAL MEETING Road Streetscape or contemplated starting Phase 2 without our neighborhood partners,” Mayor Michael B. Coleman said. “By The Annual Membership Meeting of the Morse Road SID is creating a Special Improvement District, the Northland community scheduled for November 14, 2007 at 3:30PM at the is ensuring that the street medians stay green and thrive for all to Huntington Northland Center, 2361 Morse Road. The enjoy.” purpose of the meeting is (1) to elect members to the board of directors and (2) to receive a report of the District’s The City will continue to work with the contractor to ensure that activities. At this time five directors will be elected to each everything is in proper order, including signal timing systems serve a two year term. Members wishing to nominate another striping, paving, signage, plantings, trees and other detail work to member or to serve on the SID Board of Directors should make sure the contractor has fulfilled all of its commitments as contact the nominating committee c/o NAI Ohio Equities. agreed. The membership of the Morse Road SID is comprised of all real property owners within the SID boundaries. The median has been re seeded this fall as the spring planting did not have a chance to germinate before drought like conditions arrived in the summer. The trees and shrubs are covered under PHASE ONE A WINNER warranty for two years. They will be replaced under this warranty, as needed, to ensure they are getting a healthy start. The City of Columbus, ms consultants inc., and Complete With cooperation from the railroads, the area’s appearance will get General Construction received this years’ American Society of another boost in the summer of 2008 when the railroad bridges Highway Engineers Central Ohio 2007 Project of the Year Award adjacent to I-71 are repainted. Negotiations are currently for the Morse Road Improvement Project. The project was underway between the City, CSX and the Norfolk–Southern selected based on originality, innovation, technical engineering railroads to determine the final details of the plan. application, complexity, cost savings, and sensitivity to environmental impacts. In 2008 the City will continue with Phase 2 of the Streetscape Project. It is scheduled to get under way in May of next year. Plans The project made important improvements to the Morse Rd. call for a landscaped median from Karl Road to Cleveland Avenue, corridor that will not only serve the surrounding areas, but will new curbs and gutters, street trees, sidewalks, curb ramps, impact other areas around the City by the example it has set. The improved streetlights and traffic signals, and pedestrian crossing cooperation between the City of Columbus and the community upgrades at intersections. Total cost is estimated at $12.3 million. working together for the betterment of the neighborhood has The 1.5 mile stretch will tie into the project completed by Franklin created renewed interest and excitement for the area. County a few years ago. PHASE 1 CONSTRUCTION UPDATE In related area activity, the City of Columbus continues to fulfill it’s commitment to the Morse Road community and is investing $19.4 The City, in partnership with the Ohio Public Works Commission, million to redevelop the former Northland Mall site, including completed $12.5 million worth of improvements in late 2006 to acquisition of land, utility improvements and new roads for the the 1.4 mile section of Morse Road between Indianola Avenue redevelopment plan. and Karl Road.
  2. 2. Morse Road Special Improvement District (SID) BANNERS FLYING The first banners along Morse Road between Indianola and Karl Rd were installed in the early morning hours of September 15th. They recognize area organizations working to revitalize the SID MANAGEMENT COMPANY CHOSEN Northland community and feature a “Shop Northland” theme. Future sponsorship of banners will be available to area businesses The Board of Directors awarded a management contract for the and local groups. All banners need to be approved by the City of administration of the District to NAI Ohio Equities. The company Columbus, and, must meet specific requirements as to content will be responsible for many aspects of the SID’s administrative and design to be considered. For a banner application and list of requirements as well as over seeing the streetscape and qualifying rules, please contact the Morse Road SID Banner landscaping contractors. The company will function as the staff for Committee c/o Ohio Equities, 605 South Front Street, Columbus, the SID and receive and act upon calls related to services, OH 43215. requests for information and complaints. The banner program will also be administered by the management staff. The Management LANDSCAPING CONTRACT AWARDED staff includes Ken Vaughn as manager, Gail Kurz, administrative assistant, and Julon Dixon, staff accountant. The telephone Environmental Management Incorporated has been chosen to number for information is 629-5295. provide mowing and other landscape maintenance for the 2007 and 2008 seasons. YOUR MORSE ROAD SID BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND OFFICERS Jim Shea, Chairman (‘08) Doug Krieger, Vice-Chairman (‘08) Aaron Gilbert, Treasurer (‘07) Kent Stuckey, Secretary (‘08) Liborial Alcauter (‘07) ACTION LINE David Bush, Columbus Mayoral Representative You can now contact the Morse Road SID staff with questions, Connie Caldwell (‘07) requests and comments at 614-629-5295 and the City of Susan Crotty (‘07) Columbus’ action line is 311. Fred Damsen (‘08) Greg Gerhard (‘07) Wyatt Kingseed, Columbus City Council Representative Charlie Smith (‘08)
  3. 3. $80 MILLION REVIVAL Developers unveil plan for Northland Saturday, May 12, 2007 3:28 AM BY ROBERT VITALE THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH Developer Mo Dioun remembers Northland Mall as more than a Lazarus and JCPenney. He lived about a mile to the north when he first came to Columbus in 1980. Back then, before newer malls sprouted and Northland died, it was as much a community center as a shopping center to Dioun and his young family. Near the JCPenney store that's now vacant, Dioun announced an $80 million plan yesterday to revive Northland Mall as Northland Village, a mix of offices and shops that he said will be a "gathering space and civic hub" for the area. Menards, a Wisconsin-based home-improvement chain, will open its first Columbus store on the eastern edge of the nearly 60-acre site. The former JCPenney will be renovated into office space for one or more tenants during the second phase of the project. More than a dozen smaller spaces for shops, restaurants and businesses will be built around a town-square-style courtyard with a Morse Road entrance to cap it off. "This project is very important to me (because of) the time I remember spending at Northland Mall," Dioun said. It's important to a lot of people nearby.
  4. 4. Neighborhood leaders stood at Dioun's side yesterday and said the project would be a boost for area residents and businesses. "I have a lot at stake. We all do," said Dave Cooper, chairman of the Northland Alliance. "You're going to see a whole new look on this piece of ground." Much of it has been empty since Northland Mall closed in 2002. The city and its nonprofit development arm, Columbus Urban Growth Corp., bought the land months later. Mayor Michael B. Coleman, who has dealt with revitalization of the aging Morse Road commercial corridor since his days as a city council member, said the work to get the project started has been worth it. "It will lift up this entire area," he said. "Some people said it couldn't be done. We had doubters all over." By the time Northland Village is completed, the city will have spent $19.4 million at the former mall site, including the money to buy the land. City officials have agreed to improve utilities and extend roads for the new development by Dioun's Stonehenge Land Co. Urban Growth President Mark Froehlich said the plan closely mirrors what Northland residents requested. Although early plans included housing on the site, they were not included in the final drafts, Froehlich said. Office workers will help fuel demand for the cluster of shops and restaurants, Dioun said. He said he's in discussions with possible tenants for the Penney site; the former Lazarus already has been converted to offices for the Ohio Department of Taxation. Menards will be a "destination retailer" and another anchor for the project, he said. The chain operates in 11 Midwestern states and has Ohio stores in Defiance, Findlay, Holland, Lima, Marion and Sidney. No other retail or restaurant tenants were announced yesterday. "We've still got some details to work out," Coleman told three neighborhood residents as he pointed out features on a map after yesterday's announcement. "Close enough to announce it, though," he said. Froehlich and city officials said the city will continue to own the land as development begins, although a sale to Stonehenge is possible. rvitale@dispatch.com

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