After years of planning, New Albany city leaders and partners broke ground on Rose Run Park, a new civic amenity in the heart of the community designed to foster connections among people and with the environment.
When completed in late 2019, the new “central park” will link Market Square restaurants and shops, the Philip Heit Center for Healthy New Albany and the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s New Albany Branch to the New Albany-Plain Local Schools’ learning campus and the McCoy Center for the Arts. It will preserve green space in the heart of New Albany, create a central gathering place for large events, improve safety for school children crossing Dublin-Granville Road and spur private development in the area.
“Simply put, Rose Run Park will be a place for us, individually or as a family, to relax, read, reflect, play, cycle, and be at peace with nature,” said Mayor Sloan Spalding. “There will be some construction pain along the way with stretches of Dublin-Granville Road being closed during the school year, but we ask that people bear with the construction because the final product is going to be fantastic!”
The project includes the first half mile of the Velo Loop, a protected bike lane along Dublin-Granville Road that will connect to the city’s leisure trails. Limestone pavers bordering the school campus will offer additional seating for large community events. Traffic along Dublin-Granville Road will be reduced to two lanes with crosswalks ensuring safe passage between the school campus and the park.
“We greatly value our partnership with the City of New Albany and the vision to create Rose Run Park,” said Michael Sawyers, Superintendent of New Albany – Plain Local Schools. “This will be an incredible educational and recreational resource for a wide variety of activities. Additionally, the redesign of Dublin-Granville Road will provide for increased student safety while using Rose Run Park, accessing the library or patronizing Market Square.”
A pedestrian bridge of iron and decorative brick will provide an attractive pathway across the creek as well as additional seating. The decorative brick pavers continue south of the bridge forming a promenade leading to Market Square. A birch walk will connect Rose Run Park to a new library garden and event lawn behind the Columbus Metropolitan Library.
“This new civic amenity will not only serve to connect New Albany students to the library, but will also provide library customers with outdoor reading space,” said Columbus Metropolitan Library CEO Patrick Losinski. “We are privileged to serve as a civic anchor in the growing New Albany community and truly value our partnership with Mayor Spalding and the city.”
Plans also call for a nature play area for children, a wooded glen and trail along the creek bed, and a bike hub/fix-it station for cyclists.
New Albany sold bonds to finance the Rose Run Park project, taking advantage of its status as one of only nine communities in Ohio to be rated triple A by both Moody’s and S&P Global. Ultimately, New Albany awarded the bonds to JP Morgan Securities LLC (J.P. Morgan), which will sell the bonds. JP Morgan provided a true interest cost of 3.130% over a 20-year period, the lowest true interest rate of the twelve bidding banks.
The park, which has been described as becoming “the physical, visual and emotional heart of the community,” is expected to attract more residents, employees and visitors to New Albany’s Village Center.