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Columbus Hopes To Renovate Historically Significant East Side Building

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Olivia Miltner
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Residents gather outside the former Franklin Park Medical Center to hear about plans for renovation.

Columbus officials announced plans Thursday to renovate the former Franklin Park Medical Center on the city's East Side.

The now-vacant building was opened in the 1960's by five African American physicians during a time when medical services were largely segregated.  Community members have worked to save the building from demolition and now hope it can represent an improving East Side. Mayor Andrew Ginther said the abandoned building sustained water damage and was used as a drug haven in recent years.

"This is a great neighborhood and a neighborhood that has done so much to contribute to the history and quality of life of this community and we're excited as it really starts to re-gain its rightful place as one of our best and brightest neighborhoods,” Ginther said.

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Inside the former Franklin Park Medical Center, residents learn about the building's history and Frank Lloyd Wright-style architecture.

Columbus City Council member Jaiza Page was glad to see a place historically significant to African Americans be prioritized by the city. 

"One of the doctors here delivered both my father and my brother, so I am very happy to see this being revitalized and the city recognizing the significance it has in the African American community here on the Near East side," Page said.

City officials said they will start accepting bids for renovating the former medical center soon.