Columbus Neighborhood Tours: Weinland Park
As part of the NNIP partners meeting in Columbus, Michael Wilkos from the Columbus Foundation conducted a tour of the Weinland Park neighborhood, and provided these handouts with maps and reference information.
The area that now constitutes Weinland Park developed as a mixture of industrial properties along the railroad tracks which serve as the neighborhood’s eastern boundary, and residences for the factory employees. A strong manufacturing sector provided employment to many area residents and helped Weinland Park to become a stable working class neighborhood in the early and mid-1900’s. To this day Weinland Park, by and large, retains its roots as a working class community.
Like so many urban neighborhoods, Weinland Park saw a decline in home ownership and stability following World War II as families left the urban core for the suburbs. This out-migration, partnered with industrial decline, led to decades of disinvestment, concentrated poverty, and increased crime in the community. By 1990, Weinland Park had one of the highest concentrations of subsidized housing in the county and suffered from rising unemployment along with gang and drug activity.
Since the mid-1990's, renewed attention and investment has been focused on the Weinland Park neighborhood by public, private, and non-profit organizations. The Weinland Park Collaborative, a partnership of more than a dozen agencies and organizations, has worked for the past several years with residents and the Weinland Park Community Civic Association to improve the neighborhood, jointly support projects, leverage assets, and meet the needs of the community. In November 2012, the Weinland Park Collaborative was selected by the Annie E. Casey Foundation as one of three partners nationwide to receive funding to support programs and services for children and families in vulnerable neighborhoods.