In a 2009 plan created by the city, here are five things officials said the Ohio 4 corridor could use to make it more attractive and better for business:.
1. MORE CONSISTENT ARCHITECTURE
The 2000 “Route 4/High Street Intersection Design Study for Hamilton” described buildings along the route as “inexpensive, disposable.” Buildings are a vast collection of designs with some garish colors, and the buildings are in varying states of disrepair.
2. BETTER LANDSCAPING
In many cases, landscaping is nonexistent, and it’s often difficult to tell where one business ends and another begins.
Here’s how 241 people ranked the overall needs of the corridor, for that 2009 study, in order of popularity: Improve appearance of existing properties; increase occupancy of existing buildings; green space/landscaping/trees; improve railroad bridge appearance; removal of overhead utilities; uniform sign heights; bike lanes or bike paths; continual sidewalks; and decrease the number of curb cuts (the entrances to businesses).
3. ‘LESS HOSTILE’ FOR PEDESTRIANS
Improvements that make the corridor less hostile to pedestrians and bicyclists.
4. BETTER LEADERSHIP
Better leadership from area businesses, property owners and local-government officials, the 2009 report observed, noting that despite a number of studies in recent decades, “sound planning and zoning practices for revitalizing the corridor, they have had minimal effect on the Route 4 corridor within the city.”
A “Route 4 Business District Association” was suggested to advocate for improvements along the corridor.
5. CREATE AN IDENTITY
More consistent signage along the highway was suggested as well as development of a district identity, and marketing program. Creation of an “overlay district zoning” would also help to enhance the corridor’s character and make it more attractive to customers, according to the report.