Category: Episode

Making Columbus Festivals

It has been said that festivals are one of the best things about our community. By extension, the folks who conceive and orchestrate them are making the city measurably better. This week, on the occasion of the upcoming Hot Times Festival, organizer Candy Watkins discusses the origins of Comfest, why Hot Times Community Festival is the friendliest festival in town, and the importance of leaning in to ensure that these festivals continue to thrive.

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Columbus Memes & Inside Jokes

Columbus has a lot of character to it. From Comfest to COSI, there are a myriad of topics, issues, inside jokes, and even memes that every Columbusite should be aware of. 614 enthusiast Doug Powhida, the man behind the satirical twitter account Fake Dispatch, graces us this week with a high-level survey of what makes the city great, and sometimes not so great.

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Housing

As the Assistant Director of Housing Strategies for the City of Columbus, Erin Prosser wakes up every day thinking about housing in the city. In today’s episode, we discuss strategies for combatting NIMBYism, the importance of non-commercial partners when we think about housing, why housing should be thought of as infrastructure, and how we can right-size our systems in order to align them to our priorities.

As a bonus this week, we have an additional conversation with entrepreneur David Hunegnaw about one possible micro solution to density: Lease the Lawn.

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Council President Shannon Hardin

As a growing city, we have growing city problems. No one knows that better than Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin. With the influx of new residents and new jobs, President Hardin discusses transit as an equity issue, the importance of continuing conversations around race and policing, why we have to do big things now, and the big changes coming to how the city council will be elected, starting next year.

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Department of Development

At a time when the city seems close to a boom in terms of economic development, it also faces challenges with that growth. This week, Columbus’s Director of Development Michael Stevens discusses the portfolio of the Department of Development, how the department works to improve the lives of Columbus residents, evaluating investments at a neighborhood level, and how tax abatements happen in the city.

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Alternative Transit

How should eScooters, ride-hailing apps, and car-share services be considered in the conversation about alternative transportation? Can we think of them as a public good when they are for-profit entities? This week, Columbus Underground reporter Brent Warren discusses the options for last-mile transit that exist in Columbus, how they came to be, and the motivations and incentives for the companies that get us from point A to point B.

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Multidisciplinary Artist Lisa Mclymont

Art and artists have the power to change perceptions. In this week’s episode, multidisciplinary artist, graphic designer, & social justice advocate Lisa Mclymont discusses her background, work, her path as an artist, how she chooses her work so that it remains aligned with her self-defined purpose, and her work on the Columbus Art Commission.

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The Future of Transit

Columbus is the largest city in the country without any form of rail service. That might not be changing anytime soon but plans are coming together for an alternative by way of the LinkUS Columbus initiative: Bus Rapid Transit. In today’s episode, Josh Lapp of Transit Columbus talks about the plan, how to convince people that we need transit, and what Amtrak service in Columbus may look like.

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Upper Arlington

Communities around Central Ohio are facing rapid change. That’s apparent in Upper Arlington where Steve Schoeny serves as City Manager. In this week’s episode, we discussed the role of a city manager, his time as Development Director for the City of Columbus, addressing diversity in communities, and the new development coming to UA.

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Homeport

54,000 households in Central Ohio pay 50% of their income for housing. Homeport, along with other Columbus-based organizations, are working to fix that. This week, Homeport President and CEO Bruce Luecke discusses their work, the growing need for affordable housing in Columbus, and the contributing factors that hamper Columbus’s housing market.

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Greater Columbus Arts Council

What’s the difference between being an arts advocate and an artists’ advocate? Look to the policies and missions of the Greater Columbus Arts Council for an idea. This week, I spoke with Jami Goldstein, Vice President of Marketing, Communications & Events. We discussed the organization and how it’s funded, their non-competitive grants programs, their new office and gallery space, how the arts community has the opportunity to engage and uplift marginalized communities, and the importance of public art.

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Poet Maggie Smith

Everyone has the opportunity to document their lives in their own ways. On the eve of the release of her latest collection of work, I spoke with Columbus-based poet Maggie Smith. We discussed how she writes, how the publishing industry works, the inspirations for her work, and why she chooses to stay in Columbus.

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