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What’s next for former foundry? City seeks input on uses

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Columbus officials are considering the fate of the site of the former Golden Casting Corp., which currently is an empty lot.
Columbus officials are considering the fate of the site of the former Golden Casting Corp., which currently is an empty lot. FILE PHOTO

Since the Golden Casting Corp. foundry closed in 2003, the 12.4-acre site has garnered attention from a variety of stakeholders. The plot is attractive because of the size of vacant space available in a central location of the city.

On Thursday, city officials and the property owners will seek input from nearby residents to update a document that they hope will foster redevelopment of the site on 10th Street west of Cottage Avenue. They also hope the document will make it easier for potential developers to secure state funds to remove any environmental damage.

Columbus-Bartholomew County Planning Department will play host to the meeting from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. administration building, 1200 Central Ave. The department conducted a similar meeting in 2006, where residents suggested potential uses as varied as a housing complex and a dog park.

Mayor Kristen Brown said that the city is helping secure state funds for a developer who is considering a portion of the property to build a low- to moderate-income housing complex. State funds to pay for cleanup of any environmental damage could be needed to make such a project viable, Brown said.

If you go

What: Public meeting seeking input on the development of the former Golden Casting Corp. foundry site.

When: 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday.

Where: Terrace Room of Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. administration building, 1200 Central Ave.

More information:, click on the “Golden Casting Foundry Site Redevelopment Options Study” link under Current Ongoing Projects.

 For questions: Contact Rae-Leigh Stark at or 376-2550.

Though the property is privately owned by Columbus-based KLM National, Brown said the city has an interest in seeing it developed.

“It’s an eyesore right now,” she said. “We want to encourage people to develop there.”

The foundry property and other nearby plots owned by KLM are assessed at about $328,000 and demanded a property tax payment of about $8,400 this year, according to county records.

Brown said the property is among 34 the planning department has identified to be redeveloped. She said the city on its website is providing details about the properties to encourage development within the city — rather than on the fringes — to contain urban sprawl.

Jeff Bergman, director of the city’s planning department, said Thursday’s meeting will allow neighbors to provide input about the site’s potential uses, to generate discussion and to address any potential concerns.

Preparing a document with some of that information typically increases the chance of developers looking at the site, as it indicates a thoughtfulness on the city’s part and provides information about the neighborhood’s wishes, Bergman said. The document also can help the city and developer obtain funds for any developments or required environmental remediation.

Randy Allman, executive director of the nonprofit Lincoln-Central Neighborhood Family Center, which deals with clients from the foundry neighborhood, said area residents are looking forward to seeing the site developed.

“They’re very interested to see some housing opportunities,” Allman said.

For about a year, the Lincoln-Central agency’s board has met with other community organizations, including Housing Partnerships Inc., and is nearing the end of a data-driven analysis to make the neighborhood healthier, more attractive and more welcoming for everyone.

Those efforts would include removing homes in disrepair, bringing in new homes and improving other areas to raise the overall quality of life for the residents, Allman said.

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