The University District Organization (UDO) is a non-profit planning and community improvement organization incorporated in 1971 to work toward the stabilization and revitalization of the University District. An “organization of organizations,” the UDO is governed by a board of trustees representing community groups, social service agencies, businesses, churches, local government, and institutions. It also works to coordinate interests and policies of the University Community Association, University Area Commission, and University Area Review Board to promote effective change in the district.
Primarily a planning organization, the UDO acts as a liaison between the City of Columbus, The Ohio State University, and University District neighborhoods to coordinate community improvement projects. It also seeks funding to implement projects that improve the livability of the district and engage residents in neighborhood participation. The UDO provides information and referral services to residents, potential residents, community organizations, and business owners. The UDO also acts as a fiscal agent for several community groups.
The 2013 UDO/UCBA Strategic Plan provides a three year roadmap for projects, programs, and the organizational development of the UDO & UCBA. The document can be viewed online or downloaded as a PDF. Specfically, the strategic plan addresses:
The University Area Commission (UAC) was established by Columbus City Council in 1972. According to Columbus City Code, Area Commissions afford additional voluntary citizen participation in decision-making in an advisory capacity and to facilitate communication, understanding, and cooperation between neighborhood groups, city officials, and developers.
The boundaries of the University Area are, starting at the Glen Echo Ravine and the Olentangy River, proceeding east along Glen Echo Ravine to the Penn Central Railroad, south on the Penn Central Railroad tracks to Fifth Avenue, west on Fifth Avenue to the Olentangy River, and north along Olentangy River to the Glen Echo ravine. The University Area is divided into four districts, each represented by three Commission members. See the district map page for details.
Standing committees of the UAC work on the areas of zoning, code enforcement, planning, communications, health/safety, and governance of the commission. The UAC also serves as a public forum for the discussion of community issues.
Visit the area commission webpage for more details: http://universityarea.org/
The University Community Association (UCA) is the oldest civic organization in the University District and one of the oldest in the City of Columbus. It is a voluntary membership organization that meets quarterly. Most of the business is transacted by an executive committee which meets monthly on the second Wednesday at the Northwood-High Building, Room 200. Meetings are open to the public.
Over the past 30 years, the UCA has sponsored many projects such as getting improved street lighting for the east of campus area, developing Tuttle Park with trails and a swimming pool in the area. The UCA sponsors a quarterly breakfast where neighbors can socialize and get to know about the latest initiatives in the area. It also holds the annual Ice Cream Social in August where it recognizes a community individual who has done significant work to improve the University District with giving of the Oscar Award. A quarterly newsletter is also mailed out to area residents.
The University District Special Improvement District (UDSID) was established to improve the business environment and patron experience of the University District. The SID is a non-profit organization managed by a Board of Directors elected by property owners of the district.
Stewards are the uniformed civilian work force employed by the UDSID to carry-out daily cleaning, safety patrol, and visitor hospitality tasks. Feel free to greet them and ask for assistance. They are there to help! Stewards may be contacted through the SID Hotline (614-395-1600) for service requests or using the form below.
Sunday thru Thursday | 6:00am - 10:00pm
Friday & Saturday | 6:00am - 2:00am
Columbus Police Non-Emergency: 614-645-4545
SID Hotline: 614-395-1600
General SID Information: 614-294-5113
The University Community Business Association (UCBA) was founded in December 1984 to address the economic development and sustainability concerns facing businesses in the University District. Through organization and communication, the UCBA strives to be a collective advocate for business needs and an intermediary between the City of Columbus, Ohio State, and other entities.
The UCBA was also established to facilitate peer-to-peer business connections, market the attributes of doing business within the University District, and provide a source of education for business owners through regular business forums. The UCBA is led by the University District Business Council, which makes recommendations to the shared UDO/UCBA Board of Directors regarding the actions and management of the Business Council.
The University Area Review Board (UARB) was established in 1992 under City Code section 3372.580 to preserve, protect and enhance the urban environment and neighborhood characteristics of the University Area and specifically discharge these duties within the University Impact District (UID - see map in Additional Resources).
The UARB is charged: To hear, decide, and take action on all applications for a certificate of zoning clearance and applicable permits or registrations, and when appropriate, issue a certificate of approval thereon; To review applications for a zoning change, variance, or special permit that may cause a stated guideline to apply and to forward comments to the appropriate decision-making body. UARB members serve without compensation and are appointed by the mayor with the approval of council. The University Impact District contains 2,310 tax parcels.
Daniel Ferdelman, AIA Urban Designer/Planner II
614-645-6096 | email@example.com