Monday, March 11, 2002

You Asked For It

Signs mark historic parkway

By Walt Schaefer,
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        QUESTION: I have noticed new signs on Columbia Parkway that label streets and historic areas. The signs are nice looking, but are made of wrought iron and have no framing or backing, making it difficult to see. Because they are not lit up, they are invisible at night. Are there plans to light them at night? Also, one of the signs near the Beechmont exit labels the area as “Turkey Bottoms”. What is this and what is the historical significance of it?
       Mike Wilson

        ANSWER: Robert Richardson, Cincinnati's city architect, said the signs on Columbia Parkway — a series of totems — are part of an enhancement project for the historically significant area. The purpose is to celebrate the history of Columbia Parkway with a form of public art. Each totem has an icon associating it with the abutting area. The signs will not be lighted, he said.

        That area of the city near the community of Linwood was annexed by Cincinnati in 1896. The area was cleared by Indians for cropland and later was used by settlers for their cornfields. It was rife with wild turkey — therefore the name Turkey Bottoms. The area remained agricultural until the establishment of Lunken Airport.

        Q: Are any plans to widen or straighten Queen City Avenue from the Western Hills Viaduct to Sunset Avenue through Fairmount? Also, are there plans to add a left-turn signal at Wyoming on Queen City avenues? Traffic on Queen City is horrendous and is made worse when someone traveling west stops traffic to make a left onto Wyoming.
       Dave Speiser
       Green Township

        A Martha Kelly, of Cincinnati's Department of Transportation and Engineering, said Queen City Avenue is to be widened from White Street to just east of Sunset Avenue. This project will remove the reversible lane and add left-turn lanes at Wyoming and Queen City. Once the left turn lanes are installed, engineers believe left turns will be much less difficult and an arrow will not be needed. This will be evaluated once the project is complete. Plans are being finalized and construction should begin in 2004, she said.

        FYI: Kim Patton, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), said the department is trying to listen to travelers and has set up a site to specifically make it easier for travelers to sound off. Visit

        You Asked For It, which runs on Mondays, answers questions about regional history, government, schools and roads. Call 381-2800 and enter 2002. Fax 755-4150. E-mail Mail The Cincinnati Enquirer, 7700 Service Center Drive, West Chester, OH 45069. Include name, neighborhood and phone.


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