County working on Camp Chase Trail issues

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By Sandi Latimer
Staff Writer

The Westland Area Commission learned about work on the Camp Chase multipurpose trail at its March meeting.

Steve Studenmund, strategic planning and land acquisition manager for the Franklin County Metro Parks, told commissioners that work on the trail is being done this spring between Galloway and Hall Road.

“By late 2015, the trail will be up to Sullivant Avenue,” Studenmund said, adding that the next step is to take the trail into Valleyview to the Norfolk Southern Railroad, which should be done by 2016.

Metro Parks will be managing the trail that is being built by the Columbus Recreation and Parks.

“We’re excited. We’re looking forward to a lot of possibilities,” he said.

Metro Parks owns a 19-foot easement along the Camp Chase Railroad to construct the trail, which is part of the Ohio-Erie Trail.

Studenmund said that the trail in London utilizes some side streets, but otherwise, bicyclists can get on at Alkire Road and ride all the way to Cincinnati.

With the trail’s popularity, Metro Parks is looking into some side issues.

“We’re now trying to figure better access from Alkire Road to the Nature Center at Battelle Darby Creek Park,” he said.

Another job for Metro Parks will be protection for vehicles that park overnight at the Alkire Road lot.

“We have to make sure no one bothers them, and know why the vehicles are there,” he said.
Metro Parks close at dusk.

Still another job is creating safe crossings for bicyclists and pedestrians.

“We’re working with the city of Columbus and the county engineer’s office to make sure people can cross the roads safely,” Studenmund said.

Friends of the Camp Chase Trail have been holding monthly meetings where progress and amenities are being discussed. The next meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. March 27 at the Haydocy vehicle dealership. The public is invited to give their input at these meetings.

Commission election

Commission chairwoman Linda Pitts announced that petitions can be picked up at the Westland Area Library for the WAC election, held May 3.

Three seats are up for election this year. People who live, own property, or work in the westland area are encouraged to seek a seat on the commission. Petitions are to be returned by April 19. Residents within the area are encouraged to vote May 3 at the Westland Area Library between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Library services

Services will be curtailed at the Westland Area Library between April 4 and April 8 while three libraries are brought into the Central Ohio Library Consortium.

The library will be open and items can be checked out, however the computer system will be offline that weekend.

Patrons will not have access to “My Account” to reserve or check on the status of items. Items that would have been due that weekend are due the following week, thus giving patrons a few extra days. Overdue fines will not be calculated during those five days.

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