Franklinton building demolished
The former B&T Metals site, 435 W. Town St., was demolished May 16, to make way for future development efforts. Once completed, the district will catalyze and sustain neighborhood revitalization and provide a place for the creative community to live and work.
“The demolition of this blighted building allows us to create a new vision for this neighborhood,” Mayor Michael B. Coleman said. “This begins our efforts to market, incentivize and build an affordable neighborhood tailored for our city's creative sector.”
Plans for the area include affordable housing, including live/work space that will allow the creative class to invest, create and live in the neighborhood. Homeownership opportunities will be offered in an effort to stabilize the community.
“There is an energy and excitement surrounding the partnership between the city, Urban Smart Growth and the Franklinton community that will, we believe, will transform this area into the next great Columbus neighborhood,” Councilmember Zachary Klein, chair of the Development Committee said. “The residential growth will lead to greater commercial development that will have a ripple effect throughout Franklinton.”
B&T Metals closed its doors in 1982, and once produced aluminum products, including carpet strips, door frames and weather stripping materials. It was also the first manufacturing plant owned by an African-American family in the U.S. and employed 500 people. The site will be redeveloped by Lance J. Robbins of Urban Smart Growth.
“I am excited that the B&T Metals project is finally starting,” Carol Stewart, chair of the Franklinton Area Commission said. “I signed the demolition permit with great joy, having given up on saving the building and realizing the need to move forward.”
“This is the beginning of something really big,” Jim Sweeney, President of the Franklinton Development Association said. “Together we're going to develop a whole new neighborhood in East Franklinton. Thanks to the mayor and the city for having a great vision.”
“Urban Smart Growth will be offering a unique community of studio spaces, performance and event venues, galleries and music, food and drink to the Columbus artistic and creative class and the community at large,” Lance Robbins of Urban Smart Growth said. “Franklinton is truly on the move after many years of quiet preparation.”
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