Lancaster discovers it’s a trendsetter in affordable housing

Mike Pettit, economic development director for the City of Lancaster, had never heard of “missing middle” housing or Opticos, the California-based design firm that coined the term. But he knew what his city needed in some of its working-class neighborhoods. Opticos would probably approve. For a number of reasons, Pettit and Mayor David Scheffler settled [...]

Insight2050 Academy on affordable housing design to be rescheduled

The Spring 2020 insight2050 Academy on affordable housing is the latest postponement amid efforts to contain the COVID-19 outbreak. The Academy was scheduled for the mornings of April 3, 10, and 17, with planning and architectural professionals exploring and demonstrating the role of design in affordable housing. MORPC remains committed to moving forward with this [...]

Five projects getting under way in Technical Assistance Program

Work has begun on five planning projects selected by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) for technical assistance. The cities of Hilliard, Westerville, and Columbus, as well as Jefferson Township and Franklin County will benefit from MORPC’s insight2050 Technical Assistance Program (TA Program). MORPC staff members will assist these communities in the planning of active [...]

Housing and affordability at top of many regional agendas

Housing and affordability are hot topics at MORPC and throughout the region. In December, MORPC hosted a mini-insight2050 Academy on the complexities of affordable housing, and held the first session of a winter speaker series on housing-related issues. The mini-academy was held as a primer on regional affordable-housing issues for a broad range of planners, [...]

Looking to the future by building on the past

By Brian Williams Central Ohio has been blessed with some developers and policymakers who were ahead of their times – and whose foresight came from their hindsight.Jack Lucks of Continental Real Estate Companies foresaw 25 years ago the appeal of living in an urban apartment above shops and restaurants in modern buildings that reflect the character [...]

Building a strong region out of Strong Towns

Strong Towns started in 2009 as a modest website with big ideas. After an initial small investment in time and money, the site attracted the notice of like-minded urban advocates and planning professionals who wanted to help out. So founder Charles L. “Chuck” Marohn built an addition, you might say, onto his growing site to [...]

Register for insight2050 Academy on housing

Registration is under way for the Fall 2019 semester of the insight2050 Academy. The five-session series focusing on “Housing for All” kicks off September 27 and is co-sponsored by The Ohio State University’s Knowlton School Alumni Society for a target audience of planning and design practitioners. It is open to other applicants. The sessions will [...]

New insight2050 Academy kicks off September 27

The Fall 2019 semester of the insight2050 Academy begins on Friday, September 27 – kicking off a five-session series focusing on affordable housing and related issues. This academy is co-sponsored by the OSU Knowlton School Alumni Society and is aimed at, but not limited to, planning and design practitioners. The sessions will be from 9 [...]

Knox County planning for growth and change

Knox County and Mt. Vernon have been doing a lot to prepare for growth and change, despite not having any planning staff. The area has had its share of good luck to go along with the disappearance of some major employers, but Jeff Harris knows good luck goes only so far without good community stewardship. [...]

New initiatives focus on housing

Affordable housing is in the news, both locally and nationally. Presidential candidates are proposing policies and legislation to address it. Central Ohio advocates and political leaders have advanced it on the public agenda. Increasingly, it’s also on the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) agenda. MORPC and the City of Columbus, along with regional partners, will [...]