Representatives of the Westwood Coalition and the City of Cincinnati Department of Traffic & Engineering will be on hand Tuesday, August 30, 2016 at 7:00 pm in the parlor at Westwood Town Hall to speak again exclusively to the proposed closing of the short section of Urwiler Ave between Harrison Ave and Epworth Ave. Note that this is an information sharing and listening session. It is not a hearing. We will start with the proposal and the process that led the Coalition to this recommendation. Then we will address a number of questions that were raised by neighbors. Then we will open it up to questions. We will end not later than 8:30 pm.
The Westwood Coalition held several heavily attended community meetings 2014 about concepts for a “Westwood Square”. Out of that process came recommendations and plans for Gaines Triangle, or what we’ve referred to as the “Bowtie”. The Bowtie is the tip on Town Hall park grounds at Harrison and Epworth Aves and, across the street, Gaines Triangle, the two triangular shapes making up the Bowtie. You can read the Coalition’s full report at and summaries of community meetings here and here and here and here and here or just read through many of the blog posts on the Coalition’s website. You would probably also be interested in the latest architectural drawings and information.
Recently, a resident of Urwiler Ave expressed concern about the closing of the little stretch of Urwiler that runs between Harrison Ave and Epworth Ave. It is temporarily closed this summer for Pop! Goes Westwood and is proposed for permanent closure for the expansion of Gaines Triangle. Note that Planning Commission approval for a permanent closing is required. The Planning Commission process is open to the public. Whether or not you can attend the Planning Commission hearing (unscheduled as of this writing), all letters of support and opposition will be presented to the Planning Commission for their consideration.
As part of the Urwiler street closure process, letters and post cards were sent to many properties affected by the changes. This detail is provided by the Department of Traffic & Engineering.
- On the east side of Harrison, all properties received mailings on Montclair and Urwiler from Harrison to Hazelwood. All properties on Epworth also received mailings from Harrison to just north of Montclair, and on the east side of Harrison from Epworth to Montclair. Since Hazelwood and McFarlan residents have alternate routes, they were not considered for the mailings as being “directly impacted”.
- On the west side of Harrison, all properties received mailings on Urwiler from Boudinot to Harrison, on Stathem from Montana to Harrison, on Junietta from Stathem to Epworth, and on Harrison from Epworth to Stathem. Adjacent corner properties were also included on Montana, Boudinot and Epworth.
An initial letter was sent dated November 18, 2015, and a follow-up letter was sent to those that had not responded dated January 20, 2016. The Department of Traffic and Engineering received responses from nearly 50 percent of all addresses after the two mailings. Approximately 80 percent were in favor of the changes on both sides of Urwiler. This overall number in favor of 40 percent is close to that required for street calming, which is essentially the work of the small island. This approval is not high enough for the work on the west side of Harrison, which is a full closure and requires 75 percent approval.
In the coordinated report process, only Fire had an objection, and it was related to the full closure on the west side of Harrison. The Fire Department does not object at all to the closing of Urwiler between Epworth and Harrison Aves.
You are welcome to comment here (we review comments before posting to filter out spam) or email firstname.lastname@example.org or talk with any representative to the Westwood Coalition. We will announce any future Coalition meetings on our website regarding Gaines Triangle, Town Hall Park Grounds, Planning Commission hearings involving the Bowtie area, and other matters of interest to the Coalition’s work on the revitalization of the business district.
The Westwood Coalition would love to gather additional perspectives on one aspect of the current plans for the Westwood Town Hall park grounds. The plans include a small dog park on the side of Town Hall grounds along Montana Avenue, across from Westwood School. Earlier community input showed mixed support so we’d like to check one more time before the Coalition submits its perspective on this issue. Here’s a one question survey. Please let us know over the next few days. The poll expires in one week. Share with your Westwood friends and neighbors.