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Community planning for a small-town feel in Ostrander

Updated: Dec 18, 2022

Delaware County is currently working with the Village of Ostrander Planning and Zoning Commission and the Ostrander Civic Association in developing a Comprehensive Land Use Plan. In an effort to fully understand the hopes and values of residents in the Ostrander area, the Delaware County Regional Planning Commission asked the Neighborhood Design Center to develop a community engagement strategy and understand what Ostrander residents' priorities are as the region experience growth and development pressure.

Collaterals to disseminate and collect survey responses for the Village of Ostrander Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

The community outreach effort included an online and in-person survey and two in-person community events with interactive displays and conversations. Fifteen hundred postcards were distributed via EDDM and at strategic locations in the Village to disseminate the planning process. In all, over 370 people from the region participated in the survey, the equivalent of nearly half of Ostrander’s population. As expected, the survey results captured responses from residents of surrounding areas interacting with the Village of Ostrander. In-person events included attendance at the Ostrander-Scioto Fire Department’s brunch and the Ostrander Farmer’s Market. The results from these efforts led to vital responses informing the planning team about concerns, priorities, and vision for the future of the Village.

The planning team attended the Village of Ostrander Farmer's Market to hear residents' thoughts about the future of Ostrander

The survey featured eighteen questions that asked respondents about ranking and describing their satisfaction with certain aspects related to quality of life. The survey sought to understand what respondents enjoyed most about living or working in Ostrander and what they hoped to see in the future. Seven pre-written priorities for growth and development were presented, with respondents being asked to rank them in order of preference. Respondents to the survey prioritized “Maintaining existing character,” “Managing growth,” and “Enhancing Parks and Recreational Facilities” the most.

Surveys further explored Parks and Recreational Facilities. On average, respondents rated the existing facilities at 5.4 on a 10-point scale. Nearly 74% of respondents hoped to see new trails and greenways.

Ostrander-Scioto Fire Department’s brunch meet-and-greet

Open-ended questions allowed respondents to candidly express what they enjoy most and least about life in Ostrander. Participants valued the small-town community feel and the existing character. They appreciate the friendliness and comfort that comes with the rural charm of the village. They do, however, hope to grow their local businesses and improve the infrastructure that supports local downtown development, such as small businesses, sidewalks, and bikeways.

Interactive displays to gather community feedback and sparkle conversations about the Village's future

Finally, the Neighborhood Design Center provided placemaking visioning and concept development plans. These proposed designs, at identified opportunity sites, followed guidance from the engagement process, including keeping housing affordable and at appropriate density while supporting commercial space for local businesses to thrive.

The NDC sent this community engagement report to Delaware County in October. Moving forward, planners will have the tools and knowledge to work toward developing an Ostrander for the people of Ostrander.


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