The Plan for West Franklinton

In the fall of 2013, the City of Columbus, Ohio, engaged a motivated team of urban planning consultants, a market analyst and a public engagement specialist, to provide a comprehensive plan for West Franklinton, Columbus, Ohio.  Urban Decision Group, along with Side Street Planning, EDGE Group, DiSalvo Development Advisors, Arch City Development and Policyworks, LLC, were charged with developing a plan for the western portion of Columbus’ oldest neighborhood, Franklinton.

As the plan develops, this blog will provide information related to the project.  You can also follow and participate in the planning process by visiting the following sites.

Important Links & Related Sites – This site is serving as the primary information collection & dissemination portal for the duration of the project.  The software that is powering the site is provided by MindMixer.  The topics and information that is disseminated through this site, will evolve as the actual planning project evolves.

West Franklinton Facebook Page – West Franklinton has a Facebook page that will also provide a place to keep folks informed on the planning process.  Links to project documents and project photos can be found on this site.

@WFplan (Twitter) - this is the Twitter account for the West Franklinton Plan.  Follow it and you will never be out of the loop!

Project Timeline

October 2013 – The consultant team begins meeting with the Staff Working group (planners from the City of Columbus, recreation & parks, housing, mayor’s office, and others).  Later that month, the team conducts their first meeting with the Community Working Group, a group of leaders from Franklinton comprised of members of the Franklinton Development Association (FDA), Gladden Community House, Mount Carmel, to name a few.

November 2013 – The consultant team begins conducting stakeholder interviews and collecting “existing conditions” data.  Each parcel within the neighborhood is surveyed and vacancies are documented.  The commercial (retail) market analysis begins.

December 2013 – Stakeholder interviews continue as does the data collection and analysis for the existing conditions.  The housing market analysis begins.

January 2014 – The project’s website ( goes live.  The public information gathering begins in earnest.  Existing conditions data gathering concludes.  The market analyses (housing, commercial, office, and industrial) concludes.  The planning team meets with the Staff Working Group and the Community Working Group.  Both groups are briefed on the results of the existing conditions report and the market analyses.  Later that month, the first public workshop is held.

Public Workshop #1

On January 28, 2014, the first West Franklinton planning Public Workshop was held at the Gladden Community House.  Even though it was the coldest night in decades, almost 100 hearty souls turned out to provide their input and mingle with others that were interested in participating in the planning of Franklinton’s future.  NBC 4 in Columbus even came out to document the event with a nice video piece with an accompanying web article.

One of the exercises that the public was encouraged to partake in was a mapping exercise where four location-specific questions were posed to participants.  The results of that exercise were as follows:

  1. Question:  What one place would make the neighborhood better if it was dramatically different from how it is today?  Please indicate on the map.
    Answer:  Click here to see the map
  2. Question:  What do you consider to be the “heart” of West Franklinton?  Please indicate on the map.
    Answer:  Click here to see the map
  3. Question:  What is the one place that a visitor to Franklinton should see?  Please indicate on the map.
    Answer:  Click here to see the map
  4. Question:  If you could create a new neighborhood park in West Franklinton, where would you build it  Please indicate on the map.
    Answer:  Click here to see the map

February 2014 – The “plan development” phase begins.  This is when the rubber meets the road.  New topics are added to the site.  The new topics reflect the progression of the planning process.  The team begins working with the City and the Community Working Group to craft a comprehensive vacant housing & housing development strategy.  Late in the month, the team meets with the Community Working Group to initiate the plan development phase.  Discussion topics include improving community outreach for the next public workshop (scheduled for the end of April).

April 2014 – The 2nd community workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, April 30 from 5-7 PM.  The official press release can be found on (in the “about” section) OR you can link to it here.

October 2014 – The West Franklinton Plan has been completed.  You can download the plan here.  The plan is very progressive in its approach; emphasizing connectivity and public open space (parks) enhancements as property becomes available.  The flexibility built into the plan allows for the development of these features in a variety of places throughout West Franklinton.

November 2014 – The West Franklinton Plan has been adopted by Columbus City Council.  You can learn more about the Plan by checking out the City of Columbus’ website.

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