Students Create Plan for Downtown Zanesville

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Several Muskingum University students worked to develop a five year strategic plan for downtown Zanesville.

Through the university’s Regional Planning course the students took part in the Appalachian Regional Project, which encourages students to look at job creation, job expansion and further development.

Muskingum University presented their finding to the city and took a trip to Washington D.C. to meet with the ARC.

“It’s got a lot of bones there. And it’s needed to have a functional and vibrant downtown. You have the water, the good parks, the streets are walkable, sidewalks so it’s really amplifying it and taking that next route to improve the city a bit more,” said Asst. Prof. of Political Science William Toombs.

They specifically looked at ways to create more recreational opportunity, expanding options around Zane’s Landing and making the downtown a gateway to Appalachia. They encouraged the city to look at attracting business to the downtown, while offering tax incentives and investment.

The project gave students a hands on experience and a networking opportunity.

“Able to do certain types of strategic planning, requires environmental scan, working with different types of partners with different goals and how to be able to get everyone to work together not through hierarchy but network. And the students were able to work fantastically with all these community partners,” said Toombs.

In many cases the students work led to internships and graduate school opportunities. Toombs said the university plans to apply this spring to take part in the teaching project again.

Nichole Hannahs
Nichole is WHIZ’s News Director/Anchor. She joined the WHIZ family while attending high school at Bishop Rosecrans, before taking a full-time position in 2005. Nichole is no stranger to the area. She grew up in Corning, Ohio and and graduated from Waynesburg College, where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Communications emphasizing in Sports Broadcasting/Sports Information and Journalism.When not at work Nichole enjoys watching St. Louis Blues hockey, enjoying time with family, spending time outdoors and reading.If Nichole wasn't in broadcasting she'd probably have become a teacher.Nichole is married to a fellow sports fan Brandon. They have two sons Cameron and Xavier.