Columbus aims to become world-class cycling community with infrastructure improvements

on Friday, 25 May 2012.

It will bring about real positive change for the West Side

According to executives at Consider Biking, the 20 miles of dedicated streetside bicycle lanes and 65 miles of off-street trails in Columbus are a good start, but other cities are investing at a greater rate, said Jeff Stephens, executive director.

“Indianapolis is investing $10 million this coming year. They put in 50 miles of on-road bike lanes last year. We know good things have come in, but 20 miles of dedicated bike lanes is far below the national average,” he said.

Bryan Saums, Consider Biking’s program manager, said Wisconsin generates more than $1 billion annually from bicycle-related tourism.

“We ought to do the same or better,” he said. “There (is access to) 300 miles of paved, interconnected bike trails.”

Saums refers to the Ohio to Erie Trail, a system of greenway paths along former railroad and canal corridors stretching from Cincinnati to Cleveland that is being completed this year. By the end of 2012, the trail will be connected to the Olentangy River Trail and continue to Cleveland.

Chris Haydocy of Haydocy Automotive in Columbus sees a huge opportunity for the west side.

Currently, the advice to riders is to take a bus through the west side, rather than brave busy streets to hook up with the Olentangy trail. But trail planners are negotiating rights of way to extend the trail along the Camp Chase Rail Line.

Haydocy and others are pushing for the city to develop 47 acres of unused park land across the rail line and near the new Hollywood Casino into a bike hub, with restrooms and cafe and park-and-ride center to entice thousands of bikers to stop in.

“If that happens,” Haydocy said, “it will bring about real positive change for the west side in terms of (bikers’) access to a greenways trail. We would have a walkable, bikeable trail to downtown that connects the west side to the rest of the city.

“Study after study talks about how a greenways trail has an impact on the residents,” he said.

Haydocy thinks extending the trail and building a bike hub would improve the health of the neighborhood. He points to a study done in the Cincinnati suburb of Loveland that showed an increase of up to 9 percent in the values of houses along a newly constructed greenway trail.

“Suddenly, that makes a compelling argument for people in Columbus to consider living in, say, Westgate or Georgian Heights to be along this trail,” Haydocy said.

Casino set to launch center for hiring

on Saturday, 28 April 2012.

Penn National is opening the temporary office on the West Side at Haydocy Buick GMC

Penn National Gaming will open an employment office on Monday that will be the base for hiring about 2,000 workers.

The jobs are needed to staff the West Side casino that Penn National is on track to open this fall.

Penn National is opening the temporary office on the West Side at Haydocy Buick GMC, 3865 W. Broad St. From this base, the company will interview people who have applied for jobs at Candidates will be invited to interviews, the company said.

Ramped-up construction puts casino on pace for November opening

on Monday, 23 April 2012.

Penn National is also putting the final touches on a career center

Drive past the Hollywood Casino Columbus these days, and you’ll see row upon row of cars and pickup trucks parked outside the gambling palace being built for Penn National Gaming Inc.    Penn National Gaming Inc. Latest from The Business Journals (NASDAQ:PENN).

The owners of all those vehicles aren’t there to get a jump on playing poker or blackjack. Instead, they are part of two shifts of construction workers trying to finish the $400 million project before the end of the year.

Each shift includes about 600 workers, making for quite a traffic jam at the site off Georgesville Road and West Broad Street when a shift change occurs at mid-afternoon.

Columbus casino begins casting net for 600 dealers

on Monday, 16 April 2012.

The big moment has arrived for those hoping to land one of 600 table-game dealer jobs at the Hollywood Casino Columbus scheduled to open in the fourth quarter on Columbus’ west side.

Casino owner Penn National Gaming Inc.’s    Penn National Gaming Inc. Latest from The Business Journals started taking applications online Friday for those wanting to be dealers for games such as blackjack, craps, roulette and poker.

The dealer school will begin in June at a former Haydocy Pontiac showroom off West Broad Street that Penn National (NASDAQ:PENN) is converting to a career center.

What’s the big deal? 600 jobs at casino

on Monday, 16 April 2012.

West Siders to get hiring preference

Hollywood Casino Columbus is looking for dealers — but if you smoke, are color blind or just plain grumpy, don’t apply.

The West Side casino announced this morning that it will hire more than 600 full- and part-time employees to be dealers for more than 100 table games, including 30 poker tables, in the casino.

“We’re hiring for personality, and we teach the technical side of the equation,” said Ameet Patel, vice president and general manager of Hollywood Casino Columbus. “If you can have fun and be a good host, if you can do that, you’re already ahead of the game in the applicant pool.”

Sprinklers too costly in casino-area apartments, developer says

on Tuesday, 03 April 2012.

Developers renovating an apartment complex where 10 people died in a fire in 2004 say it would be too expensive to install sprinklers in each apartment in some of the buildings.

Franklin Township’s fire chief and building inspector told Matrix Realty Partners, the owner of the 1,678-unit Oakbrook Manor Apartments, that 96 units in four buildings the company is renovating must have sprinklers to meet current fire codes. The four buildings, like the one where the victims were trapped by an arsonist, have apartments with a single exit to a common entry hall.

Other configurations where it’s easier to get out may not require sprinklers. But for these four buildings, it’s a safety issue, said township Fire Chief Richard Howard.

West Siders Fight Trash, Ruts

on Thursday, 22 March 2012.

Community working Together

You're spending more time outdoors, right? One community says they won't stop picking up and pushing for the city's help to keep their neighborhoods looking nice.

West Side neighbors are battling a number of problems. No. 1 is the fight against drugs. But West Siders are fighting something else -- trash and ruts.

There's a huge number of out-in-the-open trash piles. The piles are in the streets, in the alleys. Trash is everywhere. "I drive down this street every day. I get sick because I see this [trash], and it is by me. It will come down my street because it is here now," Stanley Thornburgh said.

Another problem is the growing amount of ruts or deep grooves in the grass, which are caused by vehicles."We know that in order to get something started, you have to make that call to the city. You have to say there is a problem so it starts," Thornburgh said. Rick Tilton with the City of Columbus said he met with Thornburgh a few weeks ago on the rut issue.

"When the funding is available for the project, we will talk about doing a complete rebuild," Tilton said.Tilton told NBC4 that the project is in capital planning but fixing the problem will cost millions of dollars that the city doesn't have right now.In the meantime, he wants drivers to try and help."We would ask them not to park over the curb," Tilton said.

By: Marcus Thorpe | NBC4
Published: March 21, 2012

Columbus A Growing Hot Spot For Logistics Jobs

on Wednesday, 21 March 2012.

Weston District has potential to double the current 2,500 PDR jobs in District


Did you know that Columbus is one of the nation's hot spots for logistics?

The central location makes Central Ohio the perfect place to distribute and ship products.

Another asset is Rickenbacker International Airport, which is one of the nation's only cargo-dedicated airports.On top of the location and airport, Central Ohio has 250 million square feet of warehouses available.

The point? If you're in need of a job, think logistics.

The Columbus Chamber of Commerce held a logistics job fair Tuesday at Columbus State Community College.CSCC runs a three-week training program in logistics, helping to provide training for people to fill local job openings. The college received a grant to attract, train and retain people in the field of logistics.

It's all about moving products through the supply chain, and Central Ohio knows how to get it done.As a crossroads for distribution channels including roads and rail, Central Ohio has become a logistics hub for the country.

Central Ohio is also within a day's drive to 50 percent of the U.S. population.

First phase of Camp Chase Trail completed

on Monday, 19 March 2012.

People can’t wait to ride off-road from Columbus to Cincinnati (a distance of about 110 miles).

With the recent completion of a 5.25-mile stretch of trail between Wilson Road in Madison County and Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park near Georgesville, the cross-state Ohio To Erie Trail now runs uninterrupted from Cincinnati to western Franklin County.

Metro Parks, the Friends of Madison County Parks and Trails, the Franklin County Engineer’s Office and the Ohio To Erie Trail organization will celebrate the milestone with a grand opening at 11 a.m. March 21. The ceremony will take place at the Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park canoe access parking lot, 8565 Alkire Road, Galloway. The public is welcome and encouraged to bring bicycles.

Urban Pathways to Healthy Neighborhoods

on Saturday, 17 March 2012.

Slavic Village (Cleveland) revitaliztion centered on bike trail 

Lot of similarities between Slavic Village (near Cleveland ) deemed the hardest hit “foreclosure district” in the USA vs. Weston’s "loneliest neighborhood” in America. Slavic village put a bike trail in and big things are happening!

 Explore unique approaches to developing, programming and improving urban pathways. View and download the Urban Pathways primer (at right) and issue summaries below.

Conducting community outreach and providing programs can extend the benefits of the trail into the nearby community.

In many urban areas, crime and safety are serious, pervasive issues, and even the perception of trail safety can influence trail use



ESPN.Com: Flow Skatepark moves to Weston Distict

on Tuesday, 13 March 2012.

As far as skateparks in Ohio go, The Flow Skatepark has become an institution, seen in Props video magazine for years and helping to develop the talents of riders such as Ian Schwartz and Steven Hamilton along the way. Unfortunately, the Flow has not had the best of luck with landlords. Earlier this year, the Flow was forced to move for a second time (under the penalty of quite a lot of money) into a former Circuit City building. Located on the West side of Columbus, the new Flow park is across the street from a huge new casino being built by Columbus, and will feature a larger retail section in addition to a new layout, a resi-area and a rhythm section. Recently, I drove down to Columbus to talk to owner Craig Billingsley about the new park. The economic downturn may not be good for retail giants, but the empty spaces left behind could potentially create new parks across the country.


Key Weston District Business Excels!

on Saturday, 03 March 2012.

Big Lots surpasses $5 billion in sales

Big Lots hit a milestone last year, topping $5 billion in sales for the first time, while the company’s earnings per share came in at record levels.

The company received a big boost from furniture and seasonal-goods sales. It also warned, however, that first-quarter earnings will be lower than analyst forecasts.

 “In furniture, all of the categories reported record results,” said Steve Fishman, chairman and CEO. Seasonal merchandise sales benefited from the company’s decision to downsize its toy selection and focus more heavily on electronics, which was “the other big winner for the holidays,” he said.

Update on 300 mile Ohio to Erie Trail

on Monday, 27 February 2012.

Weston District is only sectain of trail in which taking the bus is recomended!

Link to trail progress

Link to trail map

  • Be very careful on the street route from the end of the trail at Wilson Road to downtown Columbus. It is strongly suggested at Broad Street you take a COTA bus into downtown Columbus. Each bus has a bike rack.

Ohio to Erie Trail

An off-road trail from the Ohio River to Lake Erie

The Ohio to Erie Trail spans the state of Ohio from Cincinnati to Cleveland following lands formerly owned by railroads and canals. When complete, this trail will connect four of Ohio's metropolitan cities, a dozen large towns and numerous small villages - all done on easily accessible, paved trails, that are completely separated from highways and automobiles.

Along the way, the trail passes through rural areas, farmlands, nature preserves, and regional parks giving the adventurous a hearty helping of nature's finest. At the metropolitan perimeter, meadows and woods give way to exciting urban centers, affording the traveller a contemporary taste of Ohio's culture and arts.

Bicyclists, hikers, equestrians, and other groups such as bird watchers, cross-country skiers, and nature lovers have the opportunity to explore the natural beauty of Ohio as the trail weaves its way across the state.

Architects see promising decade ahead for Columbus

on Sunday, 26 February 2012.

The area around the new Hollywood Casino Columbus is another hot spot

Architects are opinionated when it comes to the future of Columbus and the surrounding suburbs — and also quite optimistic. And those opinionated optimists say the next decade should be interesting and present a lot of opportunities, especially Downtown and in the surrounding historic neighborhoods as more people move in and the vacant spaces are filled in with new projects.

Going with the Flow

on Thursday, 23 February 2012.

It reads likes a love story

Pushed away from its voter-approved Arena District destiny, a casino moves to a desperate neighborhood willing to overlook her flaws. In turn, the unlikely romance leads to life happily ever after and, of course, lots of economic redevelopment. So now that Penn National’s Hollywood Casino, which is on schedule to open late this year, is starting to become the dominant fixture on the city’s western gateway, how well is that fairy tale working out?
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