Five Years of a Fine, Fine City

Congratulations to (614) for five years of successful publication in the City of Columbus. You have provided a fresh and thoughtful voice to our community conversation.

Our city has changed dramatically since 2009, when (614) published its first issue. We are now recognized as one of the best American cities for jobs, for college graduates and for businesses. We now have a curbside residential recycling program that has been recognized as one of the best in the country. The Lincoln Theater has reopened, and we have begun transformative revitalization efforts in neighborhoods, such as the Southern Gateway, East Franklinton and American Addition. We have new modes of transportation, such as CoGo Bike Share and Car2Go, along with miles of new bikeways. Our Downtown is a vibrant new neighborhood with the additions of Scioto Mile, Columbus Commons, Huntington Park, the Hilton Columbus Downtown, the Main Street and Rich Street Bridges and thousands of new residents.

I am proud of the city we have become. And I am excited about the city we are becoming.

Five years from now, when (614) celebrates its 10-year anniversary, I am confident Columbus will be one of America’s elite cities. While I cannot foresee every new challenge we will face, I do know we have great things on the horizon.

By 2019, we will be a city of more than 1 million residents. We will have a transformed Downtown riverfront, with acres of new green space, gorgeous trees and a new attraction from the Columbus Zoo overlooking a cleaner, greener Scioto River. We will have a vastly improved Columbus City Schools district and thousands of additional children benefiting from quality preschool. Our economy will continue to be the envy of the nation, and our workforce will be better trained for the great jobs we offer. Thousands of new residents will be living Downtown as well as surrounding improved neighborhoods such as Franklinton and the Near East Side. It will be easier to get around our city, whether by bicycle, by bus, or other alternative transportation options.

One thing that I don’t expect to change is the compassion, wisdom and ingenuity of our residents. And that’s the best thing about us.

Happy anniversary, (614).

Editor’s Note: Mayor Michael Coleman sportingly donned the Santa cap for (614)back in December 2009, laying out his Wish List for the city of Columbus. Five years later, he can cross a few things off his list (universal federal healthcare, more Columbus bikeways, and a Final Four for the OSU Men’s basketball team, to name a few), while his long-kindled desire for light rail remains a stagnant lump of coal. Here, he offers his further thoughts on the evolution of Columbus.