West 3rd Avenue Sidewalks & Shared-Use Path Updates
The Grandview Yard project is in the middle of its multi-year transformation of the land just west of Olentangy River Road between Goodale Boulevard and West Fifth Avenue. During the project, we have seen many transformations, constructions and street closings. Part of the project involves multi-phase construction on West 3rd Avenue. Many Harrison West residents are excited about having a new, high-end Giant Eagle and its accompanying GetGo gas station so near the neighborhood. However, many residents are concerned about the lack of direct pedestrian access to the new businesses. For now, walkers and bikers can reach the businesses only by sharing the roadway with car and truck traffic that can be heavy at times.
The Harrison West Society presented some questions to Richard Ortman, engineer with the City of Columbus on this particular phase of the project:
1. Will there be sidewalks or pedestrian access to the new Giant Eagle development on West 3rd from Olentangy River Road?
RO: A sidewalk on the north side and a shared use path on the south side are planned for 3rd Avenue.
2. If so, what is timeline for implementation of pedestrian sidewalks/shared use under the railroad bridge on West 3rd, just west of Olentangy River Road?
RO: Construction is scheduled to begin in summer 2015 and be completed in autumn 2016, subject to funding approval and weather conditions.
3. Why were sidewalks or a shared use path not created as part of the beginning of the Grandview Yard construction?
RO: The 3rd Avenue project was always planned in two phases. The first phase installed sidewalks and a shared-use path between Edgehill Road and a spot immediately west of the railroad bridge.
4. What organization is leading the development of the sidewalks?
RO: Nationwide Realty Investors is working with the City of Columbus to develop the 3rd Avenue infrastructure.
5. During the construction of sidewalks, will there be any impact on the roads for drivers?
RO: Two-way traffic will be maintained on 3rd Avenue during construction. The section in the second phase may have temporary closures during the CSX railroad bridge construction.
6. Why did “they” (the city, the owner of the Tribeca Apartments, or whoever) install new trees where “they” did. It seems like those new trees are smack-dab in the middle of where a sidewalk would run behind the Tribeca Apartments. If the city is truly planning a sidewalk along there, and if, as suspected, those trees are going to be in the way, then they should move those trees now before they get established.
RO: Tribeca Apartments planted the trees and it will not be necessary to move them for the sidewalk construction.
7. Many residents are concerned about safety in trying to walk to the new Giant Eagle from Harrison West during this time. Even if there aren’t sidewalks, there will be people trying to walk to and from the new Giant Eagle. What (if any) safety measures will the city be taking to ensure pedestrian safety for those that do choose to walk?
RO: The City of Columbus does not recommend that pedestrians walk in the 3rd Avenue roadway and to avoid walking through the construction zone along 3rd Avenue during the two-phase construction. Phase two of the project will make this segment of 3rd Avenue safer for pedestrians after its completion. In the interim, we ask residents to utilize other means of transportation to and from the new Giant Eagle if they are able to until the project is completed.
8. If construction will take an extended period of time, would the city be open to providing concrete barriers as a means to provide a safe pedestrian walkway to the new area? This is already being done successfully on Long Street downtown during the Scioto Greenways project.
RO: There is not enough room under the existing railroad bridge to provide travel lanes and a pedestrian walkway until after the construction is completed. COTA route #3 also uses West 3rd Avenue.
9. Are there any public forums for residents to ask questions or provide suggestions/feedback for the project? When/where? Who can someone contact with questions/concerns?
RO: A public meeting was held August 28th, 2014, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m., at 1000-B Edgehill Road. Steve Cordetti on my staff e-mailed you (Harrison West Society) an invitation to this meeting on August 16th. Please contact project manager Richard Ortman at 614-645-5465, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any additional questions.