Columbus Projects & Studies

Columbus Projects & Studies 2017-09-08T10:54:42+00:00

Neighborhood Commercial Study

neighborhood-commercial-studyThe Neighborhood Commercial Study was initiated to investigate the potential for future neighborhood commercial developments within the City of Columbus.  Neighborhood commercial centers are developments located within residential areas. These developments can range from a single business to a small-scale neighborhood center with a variety of uses.  They offer a number of benefits, from encouraging walking and biking and reducing traffic congestion to providing convenience shopping and services within close proximity of residents.  However, these developments can also conflict with surrounding residential uses.  Through the Neighborhood Commercial Study, the Planning Department hopes to find the appropriate balance between these two perspectives and ultimately identify (1) the most suitable locations for future neighborhood commercial developments as the city continues to grow, and (2) the development characteristics that will make future neighborhood commercial developments the most compatible with surrounding residential areas.

For more information about the Neighborhood Commercial Study, please contact Emilie Pinkston, Senior Planner, at or at 812.376.2550

BCSC Safe Routes to School Plan

srtsThe Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation (BCSC) Safe Routes to School Plan was completed in 2012 through the efforts of the Bartholomew County Safe Routes to School Committee.  Along with the Planning Department, the committee is composed of representatives from the Engineering, Police and Parks Departments; the Metropolitan Planning Organization; Healthy Communities; the BCSC Transportation Department; and principals and teachers from each school.  With grant money received from the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), the Bartholomew County Safe Routes to School Committee worked with consultants, Alta Planning & Design and Burgess & Niple, to create the BCSC Safe Routes to School Plan for nine schools (Lincoln CSA, Parkside, Richards, Schmitt, Smith, Southside, & Taylorsville Elementary and Central & Northside Middle School).  The plan identifies areas around each school that need intersection improvements, sidewalk repair, bicycle parking, enhanced lighting, or traffic control and provides recommendations for improvements.  The plan also includes various educational programs and incentives to support walking and biking to school.  The Planning Department managed the grant administration and contract and the day-to-day efforts of the consultants.  The plan has been adopted by the BCSC School Board and endorsed by the City Council and the County Commissioners.

BCSC Safe Routes to School Plan (PDF)

For information on the National Center for Safe Routes to School go to

Camp Atterbury/Muscatatuck Joint Land Use Study

atterThe Joint Land Use Study was completed in 2009 and is the result of a cooperative venture between the Indiana National Guard; Bartholomew, Brown, Jennings, and Johnson Counties; the City of Columbus; the Towns of Edinburgh and Prince’s Lakes; and the Cordry-Sweetwater Conservancy.  The project was funded by the U.S. Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment .  The need for the study was generated by the rapid growth and substantial increase in the use of Camp Atterbury and the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center by the Indiana National Guard and other branches of the military.  The study compared the long-term facility and operational plans of the military installations with the land use patterns, transportation infrastructure, and future plans of the surrounding  communities.  The intent was to identify and manage any incompatibilities.  Common issues around military facilities include hazards to and from military aircraft and the noise created by military training exercises.  The objectives of the JLUS were to (1) encourage cooperative land use planning between military installations and the surrounding communities; (2) seek ways to reduce the operational impacts of military installations on adjacent land; (3) reduce potential incompatibilities between the military installation and surrounding communities while still accommodating new growth and economic development; and (4) protect the general public’s health, safety, and welfare without compromising the operational missions of the installation.

Camp Atterbury / Muscatatuck Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) (PDF)

City of Columbus Intersection Study: A Plan4Health Initiative

Westenedge Aerial(1)In late 2014, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in partnership with the American Planning Association (APA) and the American Public Health Association (APHA), initiated a nationwide effort to increase opportunities for physical activity. As a lack of physical activity is a primary indicator of chronic disease, these organizations recognized the strong link between community design and public health. Community design plays a vital role in creating opportunities for physical activity, through the incorporation of sidewalks, bicycle infrastructure, and other design elements that not only allow, but promote, movement. Thus, these partnering organizations facilitated the establishment of a grant program called the Plan4Health Initiative. This initiative encouraged communities to form coalitions and implement strategies within the built environment that encourage active living.

The coalition team in Columbus, led by Healthy Communities and the City of Columbus Planning Department, was one of only 18 communities nationwide selected to implement a Plan4Health project. The local project included the following 3 strategies: (1) the improvement of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure in the neighborhood between Noblitt, Donner, and Lincoln Parks, including the analysis and redesign of crossing treatments at several key intersections, (2) a review of the policies and procedures, in partnership with the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), for the design of safe and convenient bicycle and pedestrian crossings at state highway intersections, and (3) the launch of a broad public awareness campaign, called “Go Healthy, Columbus,” which emphasizes the importance of designing and building our community in a way that makes an active lifestyle the easy choice. (

The following document describes the outcome of the infrastructure-related components of the Plan4Health project, listed as Strategies 1 and 2 above.

City of Columbus Intersection Study: A Plan4Health Initiative (PDF)

Development & Access Study Between Goeller Blvd. & State Road 46

state-road-46Over the past few years, there has been new development on the west side of Columbus off of Goeller Boulevard, south of State Road 46. During the review of these new developments, the City of Columbus Plan Commission had expressed concerns about additional traffic in the area and the preferred scenarios for access for these developing properties. In response to these concerns, the Planning Department has prepared a study focused on an area bound by State Road 46, Goeller Boulevard, and County Road 350 West. This study highlights the existing conditions, potential properties that could develop in the future, and access constraints for the area. It will also illustrate access options and alternatives for properties in the focus area that have potential to develop in the future.

Development & Access Study (PDF)

Golden Casting Foundry Site Redevelopment Options Study

foundThe Golden Casting Foundry Site Redevelopment Options Study was initiated in 2006.  At that time, all research in the document was completed.  In September 2012, the document was reopened, updated as needed for the purpose of further promoting and supporting the redevelopment of this area, and adopted by City Council.  The study examines the former Golden Casting Foundry site and vicinity, its physical conditions and area demographics, the opportunities that exist, and the recommended options for redevelopment.  The study is intended to identify general concepts for the future redevelopment of the foundry site.  The study does not include specific redevelopment proposals, timelines, or other specific details.

The Golden Casting Foundry Site Redevelopment Options Study (PDF)