Columbus's Thriving Arts District Goes on Display

Driven by its long-cultivated arts community, development of Columbus, Ohio's Short North neighborhood has defied the economic downturn as investment in the once-downtrodden area continues.

Columbus Mayor Michael B. Coleman may be guilty of a bit of civic embellishment when he claims that the city's Short North neighborhood is "the premier arts district in the nation." Jamie Duffy, of The New York Times describes the decades-long transformation making mayor Coleman so proud.

Duffy traces the redevelopment of the neighborhood, located between downtown Columbus and Ohio State University, from the late 1970s, when pioneers started rehabbing homes and businesses, to the opening of the "now renowned Rigsby's Kitchen" in the 1980s, and the creation of a special improvement district 12 years ago, which "bolstered development and has provided the city with a template for four other similar districts."

"Supporters of the Short North describe it as a place where bohemians, lower-income city dwellers and better-off suburban residents come to mix and to find an eclectic groove that can be found nowhere else in Ohio," writes Duffy. One wonders if the completion of the city's first boutique hotel and several residential and mixed use projects planned for the area might change that.

Thanks to Andrew Gorden

Full Story: In Columbus, Ohio, an Arts Belt Is Thriving

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