Summer 2018 in Review

It has been an action-packed summer in Greenhills! So much happened it is actually difficult to remember everything!

We definitely had a very good season at the Greenhills Swimming Pool!  Attendance was way up thanks to the 90+ temperatures! We believe the addition of a credit card machine helped, as well.  The staff had to work through an issue early in the season regarding proper swim attire. Enforcing the rules is not always a popular thing to do, but the pool staff did a great job and members appreciated their efforts!

Community Day at the pool and Member Appreciation Day at the pool were both well-attended.  The Recreation Commission did a great job with every aspect of these events!

Pool members have asked us to consider options for keeping the pool open longer at the end of summer. We will take a close look at the suggestions that have been made and see if we can work something out!

For the first time we have opted to not cover the pool this winter.   There are a couple of reasons for this.  First, pool covers are very expensive. Second, nationally, the best practice for large pools is to leave them uncovered. Prior to shutting down the circulation, the water is treated and perfectly balanced. The pool is not being neglected; with no circulation the water is going to turn dark.  It does the same thing even if it is covered.  You may wonder why we don’t drain it completely.  The reason is because a certain amount of water in the pool serves as a counter-weight against water pushing on it from underground.

Mosquitos are NOT an issue because they do not breed at this time of year. By the time breeding season rolls around in the spring, the pool will be drained, cleaned and filled for another season of swimming!

Park Talks were great this summer with more than 50 people attending a park talk for the first time.  We couldn’t help but notice that serving food was well received, so you can plan on food at all future Park Talks!

Some much-needed street repairs were completed this summer. (Driving on a newly-paved surface is always a pleasure.)  And there is more repaving planned for next year as well!

Time was spent this summer responding to and working with our residents who were the target of complaints filed against their property valuations. It was upsetting to see the lives of so many of our residents interrupted as first they had to figure out what the heck was going on, and second, they had to journey downtown to attend hearings in front of the Hamilton County Board of Revisions. Those involved were immensely grateful for Village staff’s support and assistance through this process.  And we were very happy to be there for them!

Planning for the third and final phase of repairs on Winton Road took place this summer, as did the planning for construction of the new school on Farragut.  Both projects will be underway in 2019.

Internal operations of the Village had some ups and downs this summer with the departure of our part time golf course superintendent and our Finance Director.  But I am pleased to report that both positions have been filled and the quality of my staff remains intact! 😊

Greenhills Historic District “Block” Meetings to be Scheduled to Discuss Local Historic District

Over the summer, a plan was developed for determining the interest of our property owners to designate a local historic district. The plan includes holding meetings of property owners within each individual “block” of Historic Greenhills.  This series of meetings will allow us to directly share information with those who will be the most affected about the pros and cons of local districts; the designation and review process; consider boundaries for one or more districts; and develop draft design guidelines tailored to building types in Greenhills.  The meetings will also give our property owners the opportunity to voice their opinions about a local district.

The results of these meetings will be compiled into a report for presentation to the Greenhills Planning Commission and the Village Council. Those entities ultimately decide if a local historic district(s) will be established.

If you live on Adele Walk, Alcott, Andover, Ashby, Avenell, Bachman, Belknap, Bradnor, Briarwood, Brompton, Burley, Burnham, Chalmers, Cromwell, Damon, DeWitt, Drummond, Falcon, Farragut, Flanders, Foxworth, Funston, Gambier, or the west side of Ingram, be watching for a mailing over the next few months informing you of the time and date of your block meeting.

You can help spread word about a local historic district by reviewing and/or printing the attached handout and sharing the information with others.

 

May 2018 – What’s Going On?

Grass Violations

After months of crazy weather, we had a few days of rain and now with the sun and warmth – grass is growing like crazy! So far this year 99 grass violations have been issued.  Violators are informed if grass gets to a height of 8 or more inches.  If you are one of the 99 – all you need to do is cut your grass.  If you fail to do so, the Village will arrange for the cutting and the cost will be assessed against the property as a tax lien.

For those of you who are frustrated every time you pass a yard with tall grass, please know that our process requires that for the first violation notification of the year to a given address, the Village must wait for the certified mailing slip to be returned before we can take action. This can sometimes take 3 to 4 weeks.  Once that has been completed, we will NOT have to go through that process again in the same year in order to cut the grass. Typically, we only end up with about a half dozen addresses that we have to cut repeatedly in a season. The vast majority of residents remedy the violation right away.

Oak Tree Plantings have started

The first of the 80 oak trees to be planted this year in honor of the Village’s 80thIMG_1648.HEIC anniversary have been planted!  One oak was planted at the Greenhills Municipal Building on Arbor Day.  Four have been planted in front of Bargains & Buyouts, 1 on Andover island, 2 along Jack Molloy Lane, 1 in greenspace at the corner of Jennings and Japonica, and 1 on Ireland.  More plantings will take place in the fall.

You can contribute to the planting of the 80 oaks.  A contribution of $100 or more will place your name on a list that will be inserted into a time capsule commemorating our Village’s 80th Anniversary!

Purchase an Oak this year through the Memorial Tree Program and have your name and the name of the person honored/memorialized included in the time capsule. Memorial Tree Program information can be found on the Village’s website.

Drainage Issues & Repairs at Pool are almost done!

And not a minute too soon since the pool opens for the season in just 15 days! These are the kinds of projects that cause a serious lack of sleep!  But the end is in sight!  Soon you should see a concrete truck pouring new decking.  From that point, you will see obvious signs of the swimming season to come!

We also had a large portion of the deck sealed to protect the concrete and insure it lasts longer!

Residents – remember you can join the pool at a discounted rate through Memorial Day!

Golf Course

I am hoping by now you have taken the time to walk or drive to the golf course to see how beautiful the grounds look. Please take advantage of this asset by joining or playing regularly this season.  The Village would be happy to work with you to schedule a league, a party or special event at the golf course!

Soon to be completed!

The new ADA-compliant pathway and restrooms are scheduled to be completed by May 18th.  These new amenities really enhance the recreation area that includes the golf course, playground, pool, and picnic shelter.

Schedule the Picnic Shelter for your next party!

Call to reserve a date and time for a fun outing with family or friends! Call the Village to schedule your event.

Street Repairs Coming Soon!

Village Council has approved a contract with the JK Meurer Corp. to repave or crack seal certain streets in the Village. For details, read the article here!

 

Street Work to Begin Soon

Today the Village received bids for the 2018 Street Paving Program! I plan to take this item to Council on Tuesday, May 8th, for approval so work can get started.  The anticipated contractor is the JK Meurer Corporation.

Work will be performed on the following streets:

Jewel Lane

Jewel will have certain areas of curbing removed and replaced; some full depth repair work done in the worst areas; and a total pavement planning and resurfacing.

Foxworth Lane

Foxworth will have total pavement planning and resurfacing.

Handel Lane

Handel will have certain areas of curbing removed and replaced; some full depth repair work done in the worst areas; and a total pavement planning and resurfacing.

Carini Lane, Hadley Road (the cul de sac), and Junefield Avenue will all have crack sealing work.  In an earlier article about pot holes I explained crack-sealing.  Just to review, it is a tool that can help to prevent surface cracks from taking in water.  Crack-sealing is exactly that – cracks are sealed with a tar-like substance.  These are those dark squiggly lines you might notice on streets and parking lots. It may not be very attractive but it really prolongs the life of the pavement.

After Council approves the contract, the next step will be the pre-construction meeting.  I will provide project specifics after that meeting.  Please check back!

Next Steps of a Local Historic District: The Historic Overlay District

I hope you are finding my articles on establishing a local historic district to be informative. In the first article I laid out the pros and cons of a local historic district.  In the second article, I have given some insight on what the guidelines could include.   So, what is the next step?

Section 1143 of the Greenhills Codified Ordinances provides for an Historic Overlay District – meaning that any local historic district guidelines that are created would be in addition to the current zoning requirements for those zoning districts.

The first step is the creation of a local district.  The beginning phases of this are currently being planned.  It will consist of a joint meeting of Council and the Greenhills Planning Commission.  The Planning Commission will serve as the official Historic Preservation Commission for the Village unless a separate commission is appointed by Village Council.  Planning Commission is required to seek input from an historic consultant in making decisions that impact any locally-designated district.  This will allow the Planning Commission to learn the importance of the architecture and design guidelines it is responsible for enforcing.

Planning Commission will need to create, review and approve an application form to be used for local designations.  Such designations can be for districts or specific properties. The criteria for designation are outlined in Section 1143.05(e), which you can view for yourself by clicking here. To be considered under that Section for designation, a property or properties must be fifty years old or older and retain integrity of design and materials.  The following criteria will also be considered:

(1)   Its character, interest or value as part of the development, heritage or cultural characteristics of the Village, the state or nation.

(2)   Its association with a significant historic event.

(3)   Its identification with a person who significantly contributed to the culture and development of the Village, state or nation.

(4)   Its exemplification of the cultural, economic, social or historic heritage of the Village, state or nation.

(5)   Its embodiment of distinguishing characteristics of a building type or architectural style.

(6)   Its identification as the work of an architect or master builder whose work has influenced the development of the Village, state or nation.

(7)   Its embodiment of elements of architectural design, detail, materials or craftsmanship which represent a significant architectural innovation.

(8)   Its relationship to other distinctive areas which are eligible for preservation according to a plan based on an historic, cultural or architectural motif.

(9)   Its unique location or singular physical characteristic representing an established and familiar visual feature of the Village.

(10)   Its potential to yield information important to prehistory or history (archaeology).

Council and Planning Commission must think about what area or areas should or could be designated and what additional regulations should be incorporated into a designated district or districts.  These are discussions that are an important part of the planning process for a local historic district.  Village Council and Planning Commission may decide to designate multiple properties to create the local historic district.  They can also select property outside of a local district boundary and apply the same architecture and design guideline restrictions to those properties.

All these decisions will be made with input from various groups and individuals.  The Village will continue to work closely with its historical consultant on identifying potential options for a local district and its guidelines, and the Village will soon hold public meetings where residents and property owners may ask questions and provide their own input on this process.  The goal is to create a district of properties that tell the story of Greenhills and will benefit from careful oversight to protect their architectural and design features: the features that make Greenhills unique!