In the next few years, no area of Dublin will change more dramatically than East Dublin, especially the area of East Dublin located along Bright Rd. Soon, the City will begin construction of Phase 8 of Emerald Parkway. This final section of Emerald Parkway will fully connect the City from its eastern edge at Sawmill Rd. all the way to its southern border with Hilliard. Bright Rd. will be cul-de-sac’d at Riverside Dr. and the entire character of the area will change. Emerald Parkway will pass within 50 yards of existing neighborhoods and the resulting changes in character of the area will be profound.
The opportunity to create something dramatic and lasting in East Dublin is now. Kevin Walter believes that East Dublin is an important part of Dublin and careful planning, engaged discussions with the community and regional leadership with other municipalities are key to successful development of this critical section of Emerald Parkway.
The core of Dublin has benefited for years from the planning that went into OCLC, Ashland Chemical, Metro Place and Murifield Village. Each of these projects is a showplace that acts as a magnet for economic development attracting top tier employers to our city. East Dublin has no such anchor to build around or to serve as a focal point for economic development. Kevin Walter believes that a complex as significant as Metro Place is the right thing for Emerald Parkway. This quality of development will bring jobs, housing options and further connections throughout the region. There are, however, a few key issues that must be addressed in order to attract this type of development. The single largest issue is access to I-270 at Sawmill Rd. Dublin needs to take an active leadership role in fixing the mess that has become Sawmill Rd. While Sawmill Rd. sits within Columbus’ control, it is impacted by Columbus, Powell and Dublin. Not having easy and quick access to Sawmill Rd. will hurt the development of Emerald Parkway Phase 8 and will likely lead to the promulgation of non-preferred development options. Kevin Walter believes that only Dublin has the means, the desire and the will to finally deal with Sawmill Rd. north of I-270. If the City has the ability to spend $1.1 million on the Roundabout To Nowhere on Commerce Parkway, surely Sawmill Rd. is a much more significant traffic issue.
Kevin Walter believes that working directly with Columbus to solve many of the issues on Sawmill Rd. will not only help our community, but all northwest communities and is an example of the bold leadership that is required of City Council.