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April 26, 2016


Members of the Weinland Park Community Civic Association


Steve Sterrett, consultant, Weinland Park Collaborative


Summary of discussions of priorities at WPCCA meeting on March 23

Much of the monthly meeting on March 23 of the Weinland Park Community Civic Association
(WPCCA) was devoted to a series of small group discussions of potential priorities for the
Weinland Park Collaborative (WPC). About 60 persons were in attendance for the meeting. Lists
of potential priorities for both WPC and WPCCA were distributed. Attendees could choose to
participate in two of six discussion groups led by WPC members and Weinland Park residents:

Economic and Workforce Development
Health, Family Well-Being and Youth
Public Safety
Community-Building and Resident Engagement

Each small group discussion lasted for 20 minutes. Housing; health, family well-being and
youth; and community-building and resident engagement drew the most participation. Education
and economic and workforce development had fewer participants. Only one resident (besides the
discussion leaders) attended the public safety discussion. Although 20 minutes was not enough
time to explore potential priorities in depth, the discussions indicated priorities toward which
residents gravitated. The discussions highlighted the role WPCCAs committees, particularly the
Housing Committee, play in the implementation of priority activities and programs.
Printed below is my analysis of each topic area and the primary issues that emerged from the
discussions based on recorders notes and input from discussion facilitators. Beginning on page 3
of this memo, I have transcribed the recorders notes from each discussion session.
Residents offered three priorities or ideas for the WPC to pursue in support of education:
1. Investigate ways to encourage greater parental involvement with Weinland Park Elementary
2. Help parents better understand the state report card for the elementary school and provide
parents with information and advice in deciding which elementary, middle and high schools
would be best for their children.
3. Offer parenting classes for adults.
The education discussion did not draw as many residents as, for example, housing. That may be
due to having several other options for discussions. It also may be due to residents with children
being under-represented at civic association meetings. In any case, the three ideas suggested
during the discussion seem quite reasonable.

The two major priorities or themes that emerged from the housing discussion were:
1. Promoting options for affordable housing
2. Design review
The housing discussions drew among the most participants. One of the leaders of WPCCAs
Housing Committee felt the discussions provided clarity about residents concerns about housing
in the neighborhood. The two priorities spoke to making Weinland Park a place for everyone and
protecting the neighborhoods assets. The discussion underscored the important role the Housing
Committee has in monitoring and influencing housing development in Weinland Park.
Economic and workforce development
Several themes emerged in the discussions of ideas that both the WPC and WPCCA might
consider implementing:
1. Residents would like the two carry-out properties repurposed to meet neighborhood needs,
although there wasn't a consensus on what that might be.
2. Residents want the civic association to foster small businesses, and there's a concern that the
self-service laundry may be displaced.
3. Residents would like to connect people to jobs at Ohio State and to transitional employment.
Residents expressed a desire for casual places to meet, such as a coffee shop, as opposed to
formal settings like meetings. Although there wasnt a consensus on which types of businesses
are needed, residents felt some things are missing that would help the neighborhood become
more self-sufficient.
Health, family well-being and youth
The discussions offered a wide range of suggestions and ideas the WPC and WPCCA might
consider implementing. If there was a consistent theme to the ideas, it was the need for a variety
of activities and sports available in the neighborhood.
Public safety
Two major themes summarize the ideas the WPC and WPCCA might consider implementing:
1. The three potential WPC priorities for public safety were appropriate (support special-duty
officers, deal with safety issues of Veliko properties, and monitor crime statistics and trends).
2. Distribute timely crime information electronically to neighbors.
This discussion group drew only one resident, besides the two WPCCA Safety Committee cochairs. David Campbell facilitated the discussion; Officer Steve Smith participated. I suspect the
lack of attendance is due to the general satisfaction with public safety in the neighborhood. The
Safety Committee should continue to consider how technology may inform neighbors of public
safety concerns and prevention measures.
Community-building and resident engagement

Notes from these discussions are being compiled.

Recorders notes from the small group discussions on March 23

Facilitator: Kat Yamaguchi
Resource: Tyree Rivers
Recorder: Marchon Hughes
The two discussion sessions focused on potential priorities under education on the Weinland Park
Collaboratives list and related subjects:
The feeder pattern for children in Weinland Park is Weinland Park Elementary School,
Dominion Middle School, and Whetstone High School.
One resident discussed what would be helpful to residents in relating to the school beyond
the states annual report card. She would like to understand what is in the report card and
wants more information about whats going on in the school.
Another resident discussed the need to greater parental involvement. He wasnt sure what the
barriers were to parental involvement, but he noted a number of actions taken to engage
parents: flyers sent to the home, food offered during events, parent nights, VIP evenings,
father-daughter dance, and calendars. One suggestion was to ask the Weinland Park
Collaborative to try to determine why some parents arent involved and how to increase
Another suggestion was to provide more opportunities for parents to know what in-school
and after-school programs are available for their children.
Another suggestion was a need for programs to serve middle and high school students.
A suggestion not on the list of priorities is to offer parenting classes for adults.
One resident emphasized the importance of children being in the school in the neighborhood.
The resident also wants to understand the rating of the school. The Weinland Park
Collaborative might provide comparison data for the schools available to Weinland Park
A meeting should be held with school personnel and parents to truly understand the ratings
and the progress at Weinland Park Elementary School.
Another resident noted the importance of residents knowing what services are available and
how to access them.
Health, family well-being, and youth
Facilitators: Alex Barkley and Julie Orban
Recorder: Jennifer Cheeks
Julie Orban provided background information on the farm trips for families to pick strawberries,
apples and pumpkins and the trip for Zoo Lights. Alex Barkley explained the work of the
Weinland Park Collaborative and its Family-Centered Community Change initiative.
One resident suggested adding the arts or theater, or both, to the field trips.

Another resident suggested new ideas for the citys Weinland Park (behind the elementary
school). The park should be a friendly place. How do you redirect children who are
More community activities are needed. Among the suggestions were:
A variety of sports should be offered. Phlex Fitness offers hip hop fitness classes. Olaniyi
Gaiusbayode should be funded to provide dance and fitness classes.
Potluck dinners are a great idea.
Identify what is the trauma-informed community building approach.
Having neighbors to talk with and become comfortable with.
Bring programs from The Center for Family Safety and Healing for adults and youths.
We need to keep the R.I.S.E. Youth Club in our neighborhood.
Use other spaces, such as the former D & J carry-out building, as locations for youth
Public safety
Facilitators: David Campbell, Ahmed Ebady and Georgina Stevenson
Recorder: Isom Nivins
Among the comments made about current conditions of public safety in the neighborhood:
A resident who has lived in Weinland Park in the area of North Grant and East Seventh
avenues for six months is not aware of criminal activity in the neighborhood.
Veliko Ventures properties have had some troublesome apartment units. Things have gotten
Drug trafficking has been an ongoing problem in the neighborhood.
The city recently reopened East Sixth Avenue between Indianola Avenue and Summit Street
for vehicular traffic. The neighborhood impact has been positive.
Closing the two problem carry-outs was a significant accomplishment and has helped to
minimize drug activity.
Crime has decreased because the number of drug addicts and prostitutes has decreased.
The Short North Posse has not been able to regain a real foothold in the neighborhood.
The Columbus Division of Police was cited as a positive asset. Among other comments related to
the police were:
The special-duty police officers who work in Community Properties of Ohios Eliminate the
Elements program are effective in addressing crime.
Police officers should be seen more in the neighborhood.
New residents would appreciate knowing more about the fundamentals of safety in the
neighborhood, including how to best interface with or support efforts of police.
The citys safety cameras, which are monitored by the police, have been helpful, although
they need to be moved to cover new potential hot spots.
The three potential priorities for public safety listed in the Weinland Park Collaborative hand-out
are ranked in the correct order:
1. Support special-duty Columbus police officers engaged by Community Properties of Ohio.

2. Resolve the public safety issues associated with the Veliko Ventures properties.
3. Monitor crime statistics and crime trends to identify public safety measures.
Suggestions offered for involving residents in public safety:
Make residents aware of the monthly meetings of the Safety Committee.
New residents would value knowing how to have information about crimes in the
neighborhood sent to them electronically and automatically. Information about how to set up
regular reporting of crimes can be included in the welcome packet.
New residents want to be aware of upcoming meetings.
Welcome packets will be helpful to distribute to new residents.
Residents want to know the lay of the land, the real conditions in the neighborhood.
Share crime statistics widely.
Better understand the relationship between police and residents.
Facilitators: Erin Prosser, Matt Martin and Sean Storey
Recorder: Susan Colbert
Following introductions, the facilitators provided an overview of the housing projects. They
discussed the goal of mixed-income housing, recommendations from the Greater Ohio Policy
Centers report on Weinland Park, and the recent request for proposals distributed by Campus
Among the comments and questions offered during the discussion:

Design review offers some control in maintaining the character of the neighborhood.
o Balcony recently added to a house on Hamlet Street is an example of a development out
of character with the neighborhood.
o Design review would follow guideline in the citys plan for the University District.
o The role of the citys code enforcement was explained.
o Design review could be implemented by expanding the area of jurisdiction of the
University Area Review Board.
o Some might oppose design review as taking a property owners rights.

Informal ways of making a difference in housing and development in Weinland Park:

o Opportunity to meet with developers.
o Representatives of the neighborhood serve on the University Area Commission.
o Monitoring the citys zoning and planning processes.

Design review and housing affordability are the priorities. Residents have an opportunity to
direct the Weinland Park Collaboratives initiatives on housing.

One landlord, who likes the neighborhood and is committed to it, asked what the residents
have control of. He suggested priorities 1, 4, 5 and 6 on the Weinland Park Collaboratives
list under housing.

Several folks identified affordable housing options are the top priority. What does midrange housing mean? The group discussed what they thought was affordable housing.
Suggestions were that affordability in houses for purchase would be in the range of $125,000
to $150,000. For rental housing, affordability might range from $400 to $500 for a onebedroom apartment.

Economic and workforce development

Facilitator: Marci Ryan
Recorder: Ross Antonacci
The first discussion session focused on redevelopment of the carry-outs, employment, and
eventual departure of the automated laundry.
The former D & J and Kelleys carry-outs were purchased and closed in 2014. A potential
priority on economic and workforce development on the Weinland Park Collaboratives list calls
for redevelopment of the carry-out properties to meet neighborhood objectives.
The group discussed how the two properties might fit into our greater neighborhood
priorities? Mixed-use with commercial and residential?
What might go into the two properties?
A place to meet informally with neighbors and to hang out, such as a coffee shop.
A transitional job site (which fits with another potential priority for transitional jobs).
Community engagement center. Is this necessary with access to the Schoenbaum Family
Center and Godman Guild Association.
What do we need? What could actually last?
o Groceries, meeting places, stores seem covered.
o Weve had housing studies, but what about business studies to see what we need and
what will stick?
o What isnt in the neighborhood? Hardware store? Mechanic?
o What will we actually patronize? Would we actually go to a neighborhood coffee shop?
None of the Weinland Park Collaborative priorities talk about Weinland Park residents
getting jobs.
How can residents get connected to all of the jobs open at the university? (This relates to
another potential priority on the WPC list.)
No need to reinvent the wheel.
Automated laundry and Dollar Tree store
Has the proposal to redevelopment the northeast corner of High Street and East Seventh
Avenue been approved?
The redevelopment is likely to displace the laundry. Will another laundry come in to serve
the neighborhood?
The second discussion session asked for a clarification of the meaning of the potential WPC
priority to engage in a bridge-building niche.

The discussion turned to talking about what might be the neighborhood objectives referred to in
the redevelopment of the carry-out properties:
Where will pedestrians actually want to walk to? Perhaps, a business or activity that will
succeed in attracting residents and not just folks from other neighborhoods.
People stressed wanting to spend time casually with each other, as opposed to formal settings
like meetings. We want to see neighbors.
We might like coffee or food or something.
What would be good for the interior of Weinland Park?
High Street and Fifth Avenue are covered for commodities.
What can you go in across North Fourth Street from Evans auto repair?
The participants discussed what the Weinland Park Community Civic Association can do to
foster small businesses:
Development is coming and we can get out in front of it to make it what we want (design,
code, quality, etc.)
Patronize, talk about the businesses at meetings, networking, advertise the neighborhood and
its buildings and services.
Laundry, hardware, shoe store, specialty foods, casual meeting spaces.
Transitional jobs? Job skills, including how to keep a job, are needed.
Community-building and resident engagement
Facilitators: Terry Althouse and Jean Pitman
Recorder: Michael Wilkos
Notes are being prepared.

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