Downtown Columbus rezoning moves ahead with Council approval

A proposed project in downtown Columbus that would replace the former Joe Willy’s Burger Bar building and other unused spaces at the corner of 11th, Washington and Jackson streets has cleared a hurdle. Columbus City Council gave its first approval to rezoning the properties at its meeting last night.

Rubicon Investment Group of Bloomington is requesting a rezoning for just over two acres including four properties at the corner including a residence, the former restaurant and a drive-thru bank building and are planning a mixed-use commercial and residential project. The change from the Commercial:Neighborhood zoning to the Commercial:Downtown district would allow for more dense development at that location.

Residents who spoke out against the project said they were concerned about the traffic the development would bring to already busy streets, the lack of setbacks and of parking. Councilman Jerone Wood voted against the rezoning, saying that there is already a lack of parking in the neighborhood and he could not see how 100s of more vehicles would find spaces.

The council voted 8-1 to move the project forward with their first vote. Ordinances require two approvals from the council before going into effect.