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HarrisonWester2

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  1. With a few exceptions, most of the growing medium to large size cities in this country are not building enough housing to meet growth demand. I don't think we're unique. I moved from Los Angeles to Columbus 6 years ago. Things were bad there then, they are worse now. The housing shortage in Los Angeles has been accelerating, not slowing, despite increasing construction. Los Angeles is a world city with lots of developers and lots of money. I don't think underfunding is the problem there, I don't think it is here. I think capital is being allocated elsewhere because developing housing at any scale in virtually any city in this country is risky, expensive, and difficult. You get better returns spending your money elsewhere. I read the Vogt report. I think a 2050 1.5% growth prediction for Columbus is overly optimistic. The Urban Institute estimates a rate somewhere closer to 1.1% between now and 2030 , and Columbus's poor out-of-state immigration rate is going to continue to be a unique problem. Even if you do take Vogt's projections at face value, they cite our problems as "zoning, land availability, regulatory guidelines, construction costs and availability of skilled workers". That doesn't sound like underfunded developers, that sounds like it is difficult to make a profit building housing. They note that Austin and Charlotte have over twice as many permits per year since the economic recovery. In every article I've read, Austin has doubled our growth since the recession, and is projected to continue doing so for the foreseeable future; so is Charlotte. I don't think it is fair to look at cities with greater growth and compare ourselves without adjusting for that. I think if we consider our slower growth rate, we are probably not doing much worse than those similar cities. I think if people really believe we are facing a housing crisis, the best thing any city can probably do is look at its existing transit corridors and remove basically all restrictions on letting someone buy along the corridor, demolish whatever is there, and build a bigger building. Even California won't consider that. If you think affordable housing is a right, we can't expect developers to deliver it while taking a bath financially. Almost every neighborhood and area commission except for Downtown SID and maybe the Hilltop seems to be a an anti-development stumbling block. It seems like getting zoning variances just to redevelop a parking lot continues to be a challenge in most neighborhoods.
  2. https://www.bizjournals.com/columbus/news/2017/11/29/ohio-state-plans-new-hospital-tower-bigger-than.html The plan in 2017 was for an 840 bed hospital. https://trustees.osu.edu/sites/default/files/migrated/assets/files/meeting-materials/2-2018/WMCBoard.pdf In January 2018, $70 million was allocated for preliminary design work, with the same plans. I think it will probably be late 2019 we see serious designs and the next phase starting. They have also already allocated money for the construction of the first replacement parking structure (they are putting a new structure down so that they can demo the Canon North/South structures). That happened at the end of 2018 WMC trustee meeting. I hope when they introduce the design documents for the new tower they include a second new parking structure as well. From a financial perspective, there is a lot of cash and debt interest is a small component of the health system budget. You can review the end of fiscal year financials in here: https://trustees.osu.edu/sites/default/files/documents/2018/12/wmcboard_11_14.pdf. Because bed occupancy is so high right now, they have a strong incentive to build the new tower as quickly as possible. Presumably, the demand is there to increase from 440 -> 840 beds. In terms of size, the new tower will need to be at least twice as large as the new James. It has twice the number of beds, a new ED, new imaging and surgical facilities. On the other hand, they will save space by not needing a multi-story above-ground rad-onc department like the James now has. I don't think they will substantially cut the number of beds built, but they will probably leave several floors incomplete like they did with the James and build them out as they adjust to the increased capacity.
  3. I walk through their campus every day. They expanded their parking lots on the King avenue side (presumably to make up for the lot they are losing south of 5th Ave). They had a large lawn there before, now it's parking most of the way up to King. The fencing is just blocking off the parking lot expansion and landscaping, the completion of which appears imminent; people are already parking in the new spaces. They have also opened up half of one of their interior buildings and started excavating a new pit next to it, I am not sure what they are planning there. Yesterday they were bringing in a cement truck. Their parking lot rearrangement also coincided with them removing the pedestrian sidewalk from Perry to Perry between 5th and King, which was not neighborly.
  4. Shrum Mound is definitely a very cute little park - you can even climb to the top of the mound. As far as why that particular thing is labeled, probably some enterprising person on Google Map Maker back when that was a thing. I know it used to be much easier to suggest changes to things like park borders and natural landmarks using Map Maker. Google closed that thing down a while ago and now suggesting feature changes on the map is done within google maps directly. I never used Map Maker but do recall exploring its community back when it was a thing. I have a feeling based on the Wikipedia page that its closing was not without drama https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Map_Maker
  5. That isn't Shrum Mound. Shrum Mound is over on McKinley by the Quarry. This pile of dirt is still part of the Columbus Coated Fabrics site along with a lot of the adjacent properties that have been built out. You can see a bunch of photos from the remediation here. https://www.epa.ohio.gov/portals/30/Brownfield_Conference/docs/Presentations/5-Rebirth a Neighborhood.pdf Historical Aerial photo websites show that the pile of dirt was a building before the remediation, and the pdf above shows that the pile was on the site as soon as they finished the remediation. I imagine it is just some leftover dirt from that project that they have yet to use for anything. It doesn't appear that it was meant to be a part of their development here (https://www.columbusunderground.com/398-unit-residential-project-planned-at-grant-park), but I haven't been out to that area in a while and I am not sure what it looks like now. Edit: street view shows most of the pile is gone now.
  6. Based on the newer site map you posted I am definitely more inclined to agree with your criticism, although my least favorite parts are the more massive apartment block design and skinnier southern green space.
  7. I can't see the full article, but it looks like the hotel (westernmost building, I thought) has no setback with surface parking in back now based on the new rendering. Or is that an old rendering? I've lived within a quarter mile of this site for 5 years now, and I walk/bike past it almost every day on my commute. I agree with everything you're saying about wanting all the cars in a more well-hidden structure, but this is such a huge leap from what we have there now and it is going to permanently preserve a lot of that privately owned green space. Would I be happier with even more green space, all single-family home infill to keep traffic low, and keeping the grocery store? Yeah, sure, but I am willing to trade a lot to keep that park on third. The fact is, the parking structure is going to be contiguous with Battelle's surface lots and OSUWMC as you go north, not a residential neighborhood. Nobody is ever going to be fooled walking down that stretch of 5th that they aren't in an area with a bunch of big buildings and parking lots. More trees isn't going to change that on the opposite side of fifth you have a gigantic surface lot backed by big air exchange machines and Battelle's shipping and receiving. I would be happiest if the apartments on the east side were less modern and stepped back from Perry as they went up, that way it would merge a bit more cleanly with those lovely homes on Vermont. Otherwise, I see this as a huge win for the neighborhood.
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