MORPC, insight2050 Partners Release insight2050 Corridor Concepts Study Findings

    April 30, 2019
    Results show focused growth yields clear benefits for enhanced quality of life and economic development

    The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC), the City of Columbus, the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA), the Columbus District Council of the Urban Land Institute (ULI Columbus), and other Central Ohio leaders announce the findings of the insight2050 Corridor Concepts study.

    MORPC projects that Central Ohio will grow to 3 million people by 2050.  An earlier initiative, insight2050, showed that compact development patterns, characterized by infill and redevelopment, are more responsive to the changing demographics associated with this growth.

    “This study sets a milestone for our region and builds upon what we’ve learned through insight2050. Its findings show that inclusive, housing affordability strategies and high-capacity transit options can lead to an enhanced quality of life for Central Ohio residents. Corridor Concepts sets a path forward for communities in our region to be intentional as we work together to plan for future growth.”
    MORPC Executive Director William Murdock

    The Corridor Concepts analysis continued where insight2050 left off by closely examining five major thoroughfares in Central Ohio to gain a deeper understanding of how communities are impacted by various development patterns – especially as it relates to transit options that move a lot of people quickly and efficiently.

    “The decisions we make now about transit, housing, and our built environment will structure our region’s growth for decades to come,” states Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin. “The numbers in this report are clear; the Columbus region benefits if we focus growth and development around mass transit. Now is the time to run with these findings, invest in our future, and change policy to foster inclusive growth.”

    The analysis explored how more walkable, compact neighborhoods and high-capacity transit along five representative routes can improve quality of life by positively impacting transportation, infrastructure, housing, and the environment.  Two scenarios, current trajectory and focused corridor concept, were analyzed on eight metrics; land consumption, local infrastructure and services, local tax revenue, transportation accessibility, transportation mode share, transportation vehicle miles traveled, greenhouse gas emissions and household auto and utility costs.

    “This study has provided important insight into the relationship between the high-capacity mobility (transit) corridors and the efficient use of the taxpayers’ infrastructure dollars to address adequate housing, accessible workplaces and the resulting worker mobility issues in our region,” said Steiner + Associates CEO and ULI Columbus Chair Yaromir Steiner. “Facing unprecedented growth in our region, these findings will provide a foundation for our leaders to make smart decisions about infrastructure investment, land use policies, entitlement processes, tax incentives and housing that will help address economic and social disparities while preserving and enhancing our quality of life in Central Ohio.”

    The results show both region-wide and corridor-specific benefits which continue to advocate for focused growth.  Below are four of the corridor-specific benefits.

    Focused Growth Scenario compared to Current Trajectory

    The numbers below reflect the impacts per corridor of a fully implemented vision.

    Five Representative Corridors E Main St Northeast Northwest Southeast W Broad St
    Tax Revenue per Acre Per Year $162K $117K $158K $61K $124K
    Household savings per year $7,900 $8,100 $8,200 $7,800 $9,200
    Non-Auto Mode Share 24% 23% 21% 23% 32%
    Greenhouse Gas Emissions per household per year -16% -18% -20% -15% -19%


    The corridors included:

    • Main St.: SR 256 to Downtown Columbus
    • Northeast: Polaris Parkway to Downtown Columbus
    • Northwest: US 33 at Post Rd./Frantz Rd. to Downtown Columbus
    • Southeast: Rickenbacker International Airport to Downtown Columbus
    • Broad St.: Norton Rd. to Downtown Columbus

    The routes were selected based on planning efforts conducted by MORPC, COTA, and the City of Columbus, which identified the routes as representing a high level of development opportunity with a need for infrastructure improvements, incentives, and/or other strategies to achieve compact development patterns.

    The study is intended to be applied to other similar thoroughfares. Therefore, the corridors selected are most representative of three corridor types in the region:

    • Build on Success and Relieve Congestion (Northeast, Northwest)
    • Coordinate with Growth and Redevelopment Opportunities (W. Broad Street, E. Main Street)
    • Make Better Connections (Southeast)

    The project funding partners included COTA, MORPC, The Columbus Foundation, The Columbus Partnership, ULI Columbus, and the cities of Bexley, Columbus, Dublin, Grandview Heights, Groveport, Reynoldsburg, Westerville, and Whitehall. The project partners collectively have contributed over $700,000 to fund the study.

    The full report can be viewed here.

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