Worthington Spotlight

City’s NE quadrant gets much attention


The Worthington Municipal Planning Commission, in recess during August, in September might consider three rezoning requests by the city in the East Wilson Bridge Road Corridor.

The requests are part of “a rezoning to align with the long-standing approved plan for the Wilson Bridge Road Corridor,” said Anne Brown, communications director for Worthington.

The city has been using the 2011 Wilson Bridge Road Corridor Study as a development roadmap along that road.

This graphic from the city of Worthington shows where city planners would like to see new zoning classifications along the south side of the East Wilson Bridge Road corridor.
(Submitted graphic)

After authorizing $150,000 earlier in July for the demolition and pad design of four adjacent properties at the west end of East Wilson Bridge Road, council sent the three, separate zoning recommendations to the Municipal Planning Commission.

The rezoning requests encompass 15 adjacent properties along the south side of East Wilson Bridge Road, several of which are occupied by owners or renters.

The rezonings are part of legislation passed in 2016 to begin developing the Wilson Bridge Road Corridor into a mixed-use area with offices and medium-density residential properties, such as Granby Place, apartments at 187 E. Wilson Bridge Road.

The first of the three rezoning requests concerns the four residences for which demolition and design funds recently were allocated. Zoning would change from R-10 District Low-Density Residential to WBC-2 District Professional Office.

Worthington’s Community Improvement Corporation owns the four residences at 127, 133, 139 and 145 E. Wilson Bridge Road. One remains occupied by a renter.

The design portion of the funding allocation provides fees to design a proposed pad that could be used as the footprint of a building on the property, or properties.

The first rezoning request stated that just four percent of the land inside Worthington is dedicated to commercial use.

“By today’s standards for Ohio cities, this would be considered a low percentage,” a section of the request noted.

The second request concerns the residences at 155, 163 and 173 E. Wilson Bridge Road. Zoning would change from low-density residential to Professional Office.

This rezoning request indicates these locations are being used as single-family dwellings. Should rezoning to a non-residential district be adopted, all the residences in the new zoning district would become non-conforming legal uses.

“The residential use would be permitted to continue unless it is discontinued or abandoned for six consecutive months or for eighteen months during any three-year period,” the request states.

According to a Staff Analysis contained in the second rezoning request, “As long as we continue to have R-10 zoning, the city cannot prevent new or significantly renovated/expanded single-family houses on these parcels.”

The third request asks to rezone 197, 207, 217, 227, 235, 247, and 261 E. Wilson Bridge Road from R-10 Low-density Residential to WBC-1 District Medium Density Residential.

Two parcels in this group also are occupied by residents whom, the request states, “were made aware of the city’s vision prior to constructions” as city leaders adopted the Corridor Study, now 10 years old. One house in this request is still under construction.

For more information on when these rezonings will be review by the MPC, visit the web site worthington.org/165/Municipal-Planning-
Commission.

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