Housing proposal approved at Westland Area Commission

By Hannah Poling
Staff Writer

Westland Area Commissioners approved a rezoning request for a multi-family housing development. The action was taken at the February monthly meeting.

Joe Thomas, director of development at Metro Development LLC, attended to the meeting to present the zoning requests for the property at 6410 Old Hall Road in Galloway.

The property is 160 acres in total with a large part of it in the Darby Accord. Since some of the land is unable to be developed, Thomas said they would be donating 126 acres to Columbus Parks and Recreation once the property is purchased. Thomas also said that Prairie Township is interested in a portion of the property.

Metro Development plans to build two multi-family housing communities on the property near Hall and Galloway roads. According to Thomas, this will be completed in two phases.
The communities will be made up of one, two, and three-bedroom apartments that would range in price from $1,100 to $1,800 per month. The communities include amenities such as a pool, community center, and fitness center for residents to enjoy.

According to Thomas, the company met with residents in close proximity to the property and will work to resolve their concerns, such as how close the buildings originally were planned to Galloway road, privacy fencing, shrub screening, and turn lanes and road improvements.

The commissioners added a few restrictions to the proposal. The commissioners said that the property owners should work with the city of Columbus on a park plan and they should also work with Prairie Township on stormwater management plans.

The commission voted 11-0 in approval of the variances requested by Metro Development and 9-2 in approval of the zoning request.

Representatives from American Electric Power (AEP) also attended the meeting to speak about outages that occurred in the area in both June and December.

According to AEP representative Angie Rybalt, in June there was a significant storm in the midwest. Although Columbus did not see a lot of the damage, high winds caused significant damage to large transmission lines. Some of those lines went down and were severely damaged. The temperatures rose to a heat index of 110, so the lines that remained quickly became overloaded and AEP was “forced to do an emergency outage.”

According to Rybalt, the problems in December were a result of a supply issue. In June, AEP did not have the infrastructure in place to get electricity to residents’ homes.

AEP’s coordinator PJM asked the company to conserve electricity to help prevent grid protection power outages. Due to the combined actions of the public grid protection, power outages were not needed.

According to Rybalt, the company is making strides to provide faster information and develop better systems to prevent these outages and more quickly resolve future occurrences.

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