Old North Columbus- A quality historic community north of Ohio State University

Old North Columbus was founded in 1847 as a stand-alone city. North Columbus in its early years was a major stage coach stop between Columbus and Worthington to the north and had a history of thriving saloon and speakeasy scene. North Columbus was also the site of a large  factory and a mill along the banks of the Olentangy River. The establishment of Ohio State in 1871 brought a major boom to the neighborhood and helped fill it in by the 1920s.

Old North Columbus never saw the level of disinvestment as places like Weinland park after WWII nor wholesale take over of students as occurred in the University District to the south. While students comprise a large portion of the neighborhood, there is still a sizable homeownership community here. High Street has also held on to much of its late 19th century commercial architecture and hosts a great array of ethnic restaurants and decent amount of neighborhood serving businesses. Also a quality urban node at Summit and Hudson and a pair of attractive boulevard streets and ravines north of here. Neighborhood branding signs were installed in the early 2000s along High Street to bolster the community’s identity. The biggest area for improvement is new quality urban in-fill along High street and Lane Ave. redeveloping surface parking lots and low-rise auto centric uses. Given the development pressures nearby in OSU, I’m confident this will come soon. The neighborhood also desperately needs walkable schools within the community to attract more generational diversity and long term homeowners. 
Click here to view my Old North Columbus Album on Flickr

URBAN STRENTHS:

* Solid multi-model access with good transit and public infrastructure access.
* Good economic diversity and only decent racial diversity.
* Great array of rental options generally renting at moderate rates.
* A lot more for sale housing here than other districts surrounding OSU.
* Pretty safe district with only a little bit of blight.
* Great park amenities including the extensive Tuttle Park which includes extensive woods, a swimming pool, recreational center. Glen Echo Park follows the Glenn Echo Stream with recreational trails and bike trail along the Olentangy River.
* Good tree canopy thanks to the large amount of park space here.
* Culturally a great array of ethnic restaurants, plenty of bars & cafes, lots of live music venues, and convenient access to cultural amenities of OSU.
* Decent retail amenities, especially along High Street, a drug store, hardware store, bike shop, several record stores, and some other neighborhood retail. Supermarkets located on the edges of the neighborhood along with a Lowes Improvement Store and Target.
* Quality historic commercial along High Street with good historic residential helped with a fair amount of late 19th century architecture.
* High street and Lane Ave’s urban form is a mixed bag. Another nice urban node at Summit and Hudson.

URBAN WEAKNESSES:

* Limited generational diversity but more family households than other student heavy districts around OSU.
* Modern in-fill is a mixed bag. Some nice dense mixed-use infill along High, with plenty of auto centric buildings remaining. Plenty of blah post WWII apartments throughout.
* No schools within Old North Columbus but some in surrounding neighborhoods.

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