They’re in the process of demolishing the old Columbus Africentric School building along Livingston Avenue, adjacent to German Village. As of yesterday, the site was home to mound of rubble, lots of heavy equipment, and one sad, lone section of the old school building yet to be torn down.
The Africentric School had been unused for a while, and it had become both an unkept eyesore and a weedy squatting ground for homeless people. But then the property was bought by Nationwide Children’s Hospital from the Columbus City Schools at the end of 2017, and NCH has announced that after demolition is complete and the debris is removed, the property will be paved and turned into a parking lot. Given the amount of construction currently underway for Nationwide Children’s Hospital — with multiple buildings and garages being built along Livingston Avenue in the area between the Columbus Africentric property and the original hospital complex — many people suspect that the former Africentric grounds won’t remain a parking lot for long.
With the old school building gone, walkers along Livingston Avenue will have a better view of the eastern part of downtown Columbus — for a while, at least. I’m generally not a fan of surface parking lots, but abandoned buildings are never welcome in a neighborhood. I’ll take a well maintained parking lot over a crumbling magnet for vagrants, vandals and graffiti practitioners any day.