Near East

Brief History of the Near East Area Commission

Parsons Avenue was at one time the eastern most boundary of the City of Columbus Ohio. Anything beyond that could be considered unchartered territory consisting of scattered elaborate homes and farm land. The advent of public transportation (trolleys) was the impetus for further development of the Near East Side. No longer limited to jobs and housing arrangements within walking distance, individuals branched out passed City limits. 
This development continued for years until two major upheavals – the infiltration of I-71 and I-70 which facilitated a huge exodus to the newly developed suburbs.
The Near East Side suffered a major loss of land and in many instances, free flowing traffic was loped off. Housing deterioration quickly followed the loss of population and formerly stately homes were chopped up to provide in many instances sub-standard housing.
Model Cities was a federally funded program whose mission was to help relieve some of the damage inflicted on the Near East Side. This effort eventually evolved into the City of Columbus City Council establishing  The Near East Area Commission in 1979.

Map of Area Commission Boundaries

This area commission meets at Neighborhood Policing Center, 950 E. Main Street

Key Details

Meeting Time
6:30 pm
2nd Thursday of each month

Neighborhood Pride Center
Near East Neighborhood Pride Center
1393 East Broad Street

Meeting Place
Neighborhood Policing Center
950 E. Main Street

Virtual until further notice

Neighborhood Liaison
Jesus Ovalle

Upcoming Meetings and Recordings

May 13th, 2021 General Meeting

Click on “Download” to view current zoning applications (PDF format)

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  • Kathleen Bailey, Chair,, 614-582-3053
  • Annie J. Ross-Womack, Zoning Chair,, 614-531-2700

  • District One:
    • Jonathon Alexander,
    • Aaron Blevins,
    • Eric Hutchison,
  • District Two:
    • Kate Curry-Da-Souza,
    • Lela Boykin,
    • Ross Goldsmith,
  • District Three:
    • VACANT
    • Laura Recchie,
    • Sierra Swanson,
  • District Four:
    • Kathleen Bailey,
    • Annette Whitesides,
    • Roy Lowenstein,
  • At Large Education: VACANT
  • At Large Religion: Particia Desmon,
  • At Large Business: Eboni Eiland-McGowen,
  • At Large Business: Rickey Duckett,
  • At Large Human Resources: Annie Ross-Womack,

This commission has 4 districts.


Planning Committee

The Planning Committee shall review existing area plans and recommend guidelines for the comprehensive social, economic, and physical developments of the Near East Area.

Kathleen Bailey, Chair,, 614-582-3053

6:30 pm
3rd Thursday of each month

Virtual until further notice

Zoning Committee

The Zoning Committee shall regularly receive, review and make recommendations on all applications for rezoning, variances, and other zoning adjustments; all appeals; all requests for demolition permits, graphics permits, and special permits; and all applications for the city historical designations pertaining to property wholly or partially within the Near East Area.

Annie J. Ross-Womack, Zoning Chair,, 614-531-2700

6:30 pm
3rd Tuesday of each month

Virtual until further notice

Zoning Site Visit

Saturday before General Meeting

9:00 AM

Virtual until further notice

Neighborhood groups within NEAC

  • Bronzeville Neighborhood Association
  • Eastgate Garden Civic Association
  • Franklin Park Civic Association
  • Long Street Business Association
  • Miami Residents Association
  • Mt. Vernon Ave. District Improvement Association
  • Olde Towne East Blockwatch
  • Olde Towne East Neighborhood Association
  • South of Main Blockwatch
  • South of Main Civic Association
  • Woodland Park Neighborhood Association


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