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Ginther Outlines Capital Improvements Budget

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Columbus Mayor Andy Ginther today announced his 2020 Capital Improvements Budget proposal. Usually announced each spring, the city delayed this year’s version because of revenue concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes nearly $113 million in new infrastructure projects built around the priorities of affordable housing, police reform, and neighborhood investment.

"$11.5 million will be dedicated to the construction and renovation of affordable housing units," Ginther continued. "This investment will leverage an estimated $83 million in total investment and 510 affordable housing units over the next 24 months. Our affordable housing spending includes a $6.6 million city investment over two years to Mulby Place at the corner of Cleveland and Myrtle. The project will include 100 affordable apartments for seniors, five single family homes, and commercial space."    

Another $2.5 million will be invested through Community Development For All People to provide 75 new and rehabilitated units on the South Side. The city will allocate $10 million to the Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Board of Franklin County to build a new facility for addiction recovery. 

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"This center will be the central and primary destination in Franklin County for mental health crisis needs and will offer an no wrong door philosophy to ensure that anyone who arrives at the center receives services," ADAMH CEO Erika Clark Jones said. "The center will be a hub for services including but not limited to: a walk-in clinic and timely community based provider linkage services on site, a 23-hour observation unit providing a safe setting for treatment for those in immediate crisis, an in-patient grade unit with 16 beds for stays there 24 hours or longer, substance use disorder treatment services including the initiation of medication-assisted treatment and linkages to on-going care."       

Jones expects construction on the center to begin in late 2021, with an opening likely in 2023. The city calls the investment part of a strategy to provide those in a mental health or addiction crisis the care they need and allow police officers to place greater focus on preventing violent crime. Other investments include $3 million for an Eastside wellness center to assist first responders in managing stress and work-related trauma, and $10 million in infrastructure improvements along Sullivant Avenue. With all funds and carryover dollars, the Capital Improvements Budget amounts to $1.4 billion. City Council is scheduled to hold a hearing on the proposal at noon on Monday.

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