East Nationwide Boulevard Improvements

East Nationwide Boulevard Improvements Columbus, Ohio

Services Provided

Urban Design
Construction Documentation

People Involved

Jeffrey Pongonis
Andrew Overbeck
Tony Roell

As a major gateway into Downtown Columbus, East Nationwide Boulevard is often the first impression of Columbus for many visitors and convention-goers, as they navigate to and from the Convention Center, hotels, restaurants, parking lots and garages. MKSK worked with the Capital Crossroads Special Improvement District (SID), the Greater Columbus Convention Center, the City of Columbus, Nationwide Realty Investors, and other business stakeholders to take a previously overly-wide, automobile-oriented environment and transform it into a welcoming, walkable, pedestrian-friendly street.

A road diet is the foundation for numerous improvements along the corridor. Narrowing the lane widths by 2-3 ft. allowed for an increase in the center planted median by an average of 12 ft. This increased the amount of pervious surface by 138% for the project. This narrowing also created a more pedestrian-friendly and bicycle friendly street. Wide sidewalks, bicycle sharrows, and on-street parking were maintained and additional mid-block crosswalks with bump-outs were added. In addition to saving existing healthy trees, new tree planters with high-quality planting soils were installed. Existing cobblestone was salvaged and reused and has been complemented with matching material and brick amenity zones.


The final key component to making E. Nationwide Boulevard a more inviting gateway involved adding lighting to the 3rd Street overpass that acted as a barrier between parking, hotels and restaurants, and the Convention Center. Using dynamic, programmable LED-lighting, this underpass has been enlivened, encouraging pedestrian activity and improving safety.


Taken together, these new streetscape improvements have right-sized E. Nationwide Boulevard and made the corridor an inviting new gateway into Downtown Columbus.