Thank You, Residents of Worthington: UMCH update (Part 3)
Last night, your City Council voted to deny Lifestyle Communities’ (LC) most recent proposal for building on the UMCH land. Before saying anything else, I want to fully credit the residents of Worthington for this positive action. It was you, the broad public, through tireless efforts over many years, that has shaped the current political discourse and created the needed pressure on our City government to now act on behalf of the residents. This is no small feat, and was achieved through many hundreds of original, heartfelt, logically compelling letters, in addition to countless conversations, online posts, petitions, and, finally, thousands of votes at the ballot box. Well done, Worthingtonians.
This Council vote, of course, does not in itself mean a successful resolution to this contentious issue, to this opportunity. But it does represent a possible pivot point. Practically, the vote means that there is now no LC proposal on the table (and there won’t be for at least six months from the October 14 MPC meeting), and, as a consequence, there will be opportunities to turn the page and to start afresh. After six years and multiple versions of essentially the same high-density, apartment-heavy proposal from LC, this is a very welcome development indeed.
The vote was unanimous, although the reasons and sentiments informing the votes of your seven Council members varied substantially (you can watch the full discussion here, beginning at the 2:00 minute mark: https://worthingtonoh.new.swagit.com/videos/150268). Two of the seven members, Scott Myers and Rachael Dorothy, are leaving Council at the end of the year, to be replaced by Katy Brewer and Rebecca Hermann, to be sworn in on January 3rd. As I see it, this new Council will be the vehicle for driving and effecting future City policy on UMCH, but it is you, the residents, that chart the general course and keep us on track through your continued engagement. This is as it should be. We are here to serve you and your interests, and it’s appropriate that you not let us forget that. Keep up the pressure. And stay tuned.