by Matthew Williams


Photo: Lukas Klose; Source: Artur Klose


Aching to paddle down the Olentangy River in a kayak or canoe but not willing to haul your boat to one of the portages north of Harrison West? Well, we’ve got good news! Working with Columbus Recreation and Parks, the Harrison West Society Parks and Green Space Committee is finalizing plans for a portage of our own.

The new portage will utilize the existing stairs and concrete platform at the end of West 2nd Avenue. A boat slide and hand rail will be added to the stairs, and a new path will snake off to the south of the platform and down to the water’s edge. Additionally, a decorative fence will be added to the top of the bank where West 2nd ends, the existing guardrail will be opened up, and the bank will be landscaped. We will likely lose a few small scrub trees along the way, but we plan to replace any that are lost.

As an added bonus, we will be enhancing river viewing areas in the north half of Harrison Park by clearing the scrub along the top of the bank in several locations and replanting with native wildflowers. We’ll keep open areas across from the park benches; that should make for some nice places to sit and watch nature.

Because the site is small and parking is limited, the portage is designed to invite kayaks, canoes, and small boats that can be carried by one person. The site will not accommodate larger boats or boat trailers.

While the plans are not yet finalized and no completion date has been set in stone, we’re hoping for construction to begin in late winter and be complete by early summer.

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