North and Central America->United States->Ohio->Franklin (county)->Columbus
The city of Columbus is centrally located within the state of Ohio. On the southwest edge of the city is West Columbus, an expansive area separated from its larger context through a large network of Interstate routes. The area is defined by I-670 to the north, I-270 on the western
portion of the site, and 1-70 to the east. Within West Columbus, there are two main arterial roadways which stretch beyond the site to its context. The first, Broad Street, is a major commercial corridor, currently experiencing a decline in commercial development. The
second, Sullivant Avenue, continues to serve as a residential corridor. Both of these hold the majority of west and eastbound traffic within its boundaries, creating spaces that are unsafe and unwelcoming for the West Side residents.
West Columbus has a substantial history that continues to influence its development. The historic Camp Chase Railroad, established to bring commerce into the area, runs diagonally through the site and remains active about two times per week. This has become the stimulus behind the implementation of a new Rail to Trail system.
Ohio planners are working to establish a system capable of providing access to West Columbus and its context, and bringing those beyond West Columbus into the site. This new initiative is also part of a larger trail system connecting Cincinnati to Columbus, to Cleveland. By re-purposing the Camp Chase rail line, there is optimism for the revitalization of West Columbus.
Understanding the context of the area is crucial to providing solutions in the research and design of the site. As the study progresses, the context will influence design opportunities, link disconnected spaces, and address social dynamics.