Canal Winchester weathers the windstorm

 Messenger photo by Rick Palsgrove
 The windstorm of Sept. 14 blew over trees in the courtyard of the former Canal Winchester school on Washington Street.

As winds blew through central Ohio on Sept. 14 toppling trees and blasting shingles off roofs with 75 mph and higher gusts, Canal Winchester counted itself among the more fortunate victims.

According to Public Works Director Matt Peoples, the village only lost three street trees, with the worst damage taking place on East Columbus Street. However, Peoples said a lot more trees on privately-owned property were lost to high winds.

"East Columbus Street had limited access for a time," said Peoples, "and Gender Road around Kroger was the only area during the storm that had power, but downtown was up and running before midnight. We were very lucky. We did have an electrical problem at the pumping station and treatment plant, but it did not affect service."

Canal Winchester’s street department is picking up debris from the storm until Sept. 23. Branches and limbs picked up by residents should be placed at the curb, out of the street, and not exceed six inches in diameter. Peoples said there is no specific pick-up schedule, but roadways will be canvassed by work crews. For information about the village storm debris removal effort, call the street division at 837-1992.

Waste Management will follow its usual protocol for picking up yard waste, which requires tree limbs be no larger than three inches in diameter, cut to four feet or less in length, and bundled.

Other Canal Winchester news

•During the Sept. 15 Canal Winchester Village Council’s meeting, an ordinance for new playground equipment for Westchester Park was approved under emergency language. Second and third readings were bypassed in order to take advantage of a more than $10,000 discount. The list price of the multi-level system, which includes slides, climbing apparatus, and balance stations, was $36,000. The cost to the village is $25,499.

When the Westchester property was re-zoned in 2004, the park section was owned by the village, but maintained by the development’s homeowner association. The area is now maintained by the village and the cost for the equipment allocated in the present parks budget.

"I’m excited," said Councilwoman Bobbie Mershon. "I think it’s time we provide a neighborhood park with playground equipment so parents can walk their children to the park."

•Madison Township Firefighter John Jones thanked the council for their support of the fire department’s annual MDA Fill the Boot fundraiser during a three-hour period on Labor Day weekend. Crews stationed at Kroger stores in Canal Winchester and Groveport raised $5,357, an increase of $1,200 over 2007 donations.

•Labor Day Festival committee members presented the village with a 2007-08 Festival of the Year trophy awarded to the Labor Day event by the Greater Ohio Showman’s Association and Mayor Mike Ebert proclaimed Sept. 17-23 as Constitution Week in recognition of the 221st anniversary of the draft of the United States Constitution.

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