Canal Winchester land use plan

Armed with colorful maps detailing future land use, a temporary Canal Winchester planning committee ended its four-month-long mission with a presentation to a joint meeting of Canal Winchester Village Council and the village’s planning and zoning commission.

"(Mayor) Mike (Ebert) wanted to do some community planning and I wanted to do some parks planning," said Council President Rick Deeds. "That’s how the land use plan came about. It’s not to be construed as an annexation plan. It’s a land use plan so we don’t have things like an industrial park next to a residential development. We laid out the plan and it will really help discussions down the road, which goes hand-in-hand with the thoroughfare plan that was presented by EMH&T in a rough draft form. The thoroughfare plan helps with capital projects. From a planning perspective, this is just the start of other plans."

In addition to the mayor and Deeds, committee members included Development Director Chris Strayer, Planning and Zoning Administrator Alan Neimayer, Public Works Director Matt Peoples, Councilwoman Leah Turner, Main Street Canal Winchester Executive Director John Garrett, Bob Garvin, Steve Donahue, and Roger White.

According to land use statistics provided by the committee, the village encompasses over 4,630 acres. In 1991, 67 percent of Canal Winchester was agricultural with 2,432 acres. Today, the percentage is approximately 35 percent with 1,524 acres, but is still the highest use category.

Parks and open space increased from 363 acres in 1991 to 640 acres in 2008. Single family residential more than doubled to 876 acres, while multi-unit residential jumped from 7.8 acres to more than 79 acres. Commercial/retail space was two percent of the village’s total acreage 17 years ago and is now almost six percent. al/warehouse acreage dropped slightly from 110 acres to 108 acres.

"When you look at industrial/warehouse space, it is only 2.5 percent of the total, yet it generates the most property and income tax for Canal Winchester," said Strayer. "But when you look at the percentages, they’re skewed in the direction of residential. We need to look at more office space (2.4 acres in 1991, 7.1 acres today). The committee assessed future land use, such as positioning of land around the interchange suits itself for retail. Around the railroad and areas like Rickenbacker, it’s more industrial. We looked at what are the highest and best uses."

Land use mapping projects the bulk of future industrial use centered in an area bordered by the former air base, London-Lancaster Road, Richardson Road, and Hayes Road, with another area of concentration along Rager Road and in an area bordered by U.S. Route 33 and Amanda-Northern Road NW.

"The next step is to get comments from planning and zoning and then from the council," continued Strayer. "Eventually, it’ll become a planning document we can use for future development."

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