CW equality resolution on hold; also community center and park updates

By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

Canal Winchester City Council took a step forward in sending a resolution committing to the city’s stand on equality, inclusion and diversity, but then tabled it again pending more information from the Franklin County Department of Health.

During council’s April 5 work session, the resolution was temporarily un-tabled and language was inserted encouraging council to attend a Community Health Action Team when available, but not specifying who would attend and when.

The resolution was then re-tabled. Council wants to meet in person or through a digital medium with the county regarding their input on the city’s resolution and the health department’s declaration that racism is a public health crisis.

“I did get a little feedback, but I don’t know when they (Franklin County Health) can attend the meeting,” said Councilwoman Jill Amos. “We do have a little bit of language from them we can review. We still need to review together what they’ve sent us.”

Councilman Bob Clark said, while he preferred to move on and pass what council already had documented, he was okay with waiting but still wants to set a specific date to finalize the resolution.

“It’s been about seven months we’ve been discussing this,” said Clark, who proposed inserting the CHAT language into the resolution.

Work session Chairman Mike Coolman then re-tabled the resolution “in hopes we can get some information from the Franklin County Public Health Department.”

Community Center update
City Construction Services Administrator Bill Sims reported on the eventual demolition of the current community center following the opening of the new municipal complex later this year.

“We don’t have a time frame yet,” Sims said. “We’ve had discussions. We know there is a point in time when things will have to switch. We’ve talked about options how to do this with the least amount of impact. We don’t have to make definitive choices immediately. Our maximum situation is one month without the community center.”

Sims said city offices could be available in the new municipal building as soon as the first week in December.

“That’s our goal,” said Sims, “to move into that building this year.”

McGill Park update
Public Service Director Matt Peoples updated council on McGill Park, soccer fields, parking, shelter house, paths and an inclusive playground area with multiple opportunities for children.

As presented, the playground includes a 70-foot-long zip line, climbing wall, sensory play panels, a balance beam framed by log steppers at each end, and a swing set. The outdoor complex also includes a child-size theatre and music cottage, hill climber with synthetic turf, tippy carousel, and a crawling net course.

A switchback path from the parking area allows ADA compliant access.

“We’re really excited for the playground,” said Peoples. “Obviously, there’s a lot more detail in that. It’s very unique.”

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