CIRCLEVILLE— Circleville City Council will meet to discuss a Community Revitalization District that, if approved, will open up more liquor licenses in that area for local businesses.

Both Paul Johnson and Richard Rhoades each submitted an application to the city to create the district. Their letters were identical.

“The proposed district has several vacant buildings which offer potential space for more residential apartments and offices,” the letters state. “While the district has many retail establishments, there are comparatively fewer dining and entertainment establishments. The proposed revitalization district would attract such businesses, thus inviting more visitors and residents to the area by offering a more complete downtown experience with shopping, food and entertainment.”

Johnson is president of Four J Properties Inc. and said the district would be a way to help revitalize and grow business in downtown Circleville.

“We need to inject new life into our downtown business district,” he said. “Younger people look at venues for entertainment and socialization and we need to offer that to the people. Our downtown needs a breath of new life, and while I’m not someone who frequents bars or drinking establishments, I can see a need for that as an attraction for younger people who like to go to microbreweries and drink specialty adult beverages. The more we can do to keep our businesses open and attract business opportunity, the better.”

Johnson said the district could indirectly change the culture of downtown Circleville.

“We can’t open eating establishments and have them open to 11 p.m. or midnight unless there are retailers willing to stay open until 8 p.m. or 9 p.m.,” he said. “It’s going to take a mental attitude change for some of our shop keepers. Hopefully they might want to stay open later.”

President of City Council David Crawford set the public hearing for Sept. 4 prior to the City Council meeting.

The proposed district covers much of the downtown area, with rough outlines being Washington Street to the east, U.S. 23 to the west, Union Street to the South and Water Street to the north.

Crawford said maps are available for the public to review ahead of the hearing.

“In addition to going to the clerks office to view a copy of the map, you can also go to City Council’s website and read the two petitions and see the map,” he said. “In a nutshell, this effort will allow the city to obtain additional liquor permits for the downtown area.”

The maps can be found online at https://www.ci.circleville.oh.us/171/City-Council under the quick links section.

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