Grove City wants to work with Jackson Township and Franklin County to improve the White and McDowell roads intersection.
At the April 7 council meeting, council reviewed the first reading of an ordinance that would allow the city administrator to enter into a cooperative infrastructure agreement with the county and township for road improvements.
As the city continues to grow, the intersection becomes more of a concern for many city and township residents who have complained that it is nearly impossible to make a left turn onto White Road at certain times of the day. They also say that motorists use the roads to bypass the Stringtown Road traffic.
In December 2007, Jackson Township was awarded a transportation grant by the Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) in the amount of $291,920. With the funds, the township had planned to add turns lanes and a traffic signal to the intersection.
The city wants to widen the roads and review "ultimate design conditions." The cooperative agreement states that Franklin County would design and construct the infrastructure improvements. Grove City would agree to finance a portion of the project up to $603,000. Under the agreement, Jackson Township would agree to finance up to $200,000.
The city would be responsible for providing the signal poles, control box and all the materials for the signal as part of the public infrastructure improvement. The agreement would require the city to remove snow and litter and maintain the road in the city.
The township would be responsible for maintaining their portion of the roadway.
In a previous township meeting, the trustees expressed concerns about the proposal, but Grove City Mayor Richard "Ike" Stage said Trustee Bill Lotz was expected at the next council meeting to show his support of the agreement.
Council is expected to vote on the measure April 21.
Pudge on the Legacy Trail
Council passed a resolution to commend Raymond "Pudge" Eesley and place his name on the Legacy Trail.
The city is developing the trail, in Fryer Park, to recognize significant individuals and events that have helped to shape Grove City. Eesley was a life-long resident of Grove City. He helped to restore the first schoolhouse in the community and played a part in securing funds for Century Village.
"He will be remembered as an outstanding citizen," said Councilwoman Maria Klemack-McGraw. "It was an honor for me to have known him."
Eesley has passed away. His family was on hand at the meeting to accept the proclamation.
"We loved him very much," Stage told the family.
In addition to Eesley’s name being displayed, the city will dedicate a tree in his honor.
Parks and Recreation
•Grove City Parks and Recreation Director Kim Conrad told council the city needs more basketball hoops.
She explained that currently the city has 19 parks and schools where the public can use the hoops. However, basketball hoops in the public right-of-way continue to be a problem. The city has an obstruction ordinance that prohibits the recreational hoops in the right-of-way but Police Chief Joe Wise said it does not have "enough teeth."
"We ask people to move them but they rarely do," Wise noted. "We don’t want kids playing in the streets."
Conrad wants the city to have at least 24 different places where residents can play basketball. She said they are looking into adding hoops in Henceroth Park, Tanglebrook Park and Fryer Park to name a few.
Council President Ted Berry said parents probably want to keep their children close so they allow them to play basketball in front of the house, instead of going to a park or school.
•The new slide should be up at the Big Splash on April 28. Conrad said it would be tested thoroughly before it is open to the public. Its first rider could be Stage. The mayor said if the city could raise $500 for the Grove City Food Pantry, he would be the first to go down the new slide.
Registration for the Big Splash begins April 14 at City Hall. There is a new online kiosk at city hall that will also allow people to register. The water park opens on May 24.