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$10M Gift Could Transform Columbus Community


UPDATED: Tuesday July 24, 2012 7:39 AM

Neighbors on the Near East side were working together to determine how to best spend a $10 million gift from The Ohio State University.

More than 100 residents gathered to help write the community's next chapter, under the guidance of a group called Partners Achieving Community Transformation, also known as PACT.

PACT is a partnership between the City of Columbus, Ohio State, Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority and east side stakeholders.

"The purpose of PACT is really to create what we're calling a blueprint for community investment on the Near East side," PACT executive director Dawn Tyler Lee said.

The focus area is bound by Broad Street on the south, Woodland Avenue to the east, Interstate 71 on the west, and I-670 to the north.

Neighbors spelled out their visions and priorities for the future of their community.

"I see businesses coming back into the community," said T. Graves, a longtime resident of the east side. "I see it as a place that could have great possibilities."

Planners will compile community input and will present an outline of the plan on Wednesday. The goal will be for investment partners to adopt a plan by the year's end.

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