On Monday, April 5, the Gambier Village Council met to discuss the upcoming 43022 Day, details regarding charges for parking electric vehicles, potential infrastructural changes to Gaskin Avenue and the Council’s requests that citizens refrain from mowing their lawns in May.
The upcoming 43022 Day will take place on April 30 and will celebrate the numerical alignment of the date with Gambier’s zip code, 43022. Council members reached a consensus that Kim Wallace, associate director of alumni and parent engagement, will lead planning and organizing efforts for the event.
Kenyon has already developed a brand for the event and has been working with the Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement and Annual Giving as well as the Office of Student Engagement to plan the celebration. Alumni regional associations will host events on April 30 in various cities across the country and the Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement is planning a number of virtual events as well.
The Council also discussed the electric vehicle charging station installed across from the Campus Auto and Tire gas station, specifically focusing on whether or not the station is considered a utility, and how much using the station should cost. Although there is not currently a service charge, the Council debated if it would be beneficial to implement fees in case the station ever needs repairs. However, one council member noted that insurance may cover these expenses. The Council decided to research the situation before returning to the issue at next month’s meeting.
The layout of Gaskin Avenue was another topic of conversation, as Village residents have previously voiced a need for bike lanes and more parking. The discussion centered around which directions to add bike lanes on the road, as well as what kind of parking to add and where. Some council members suggested adding parallel parking spaces on the side of the road closer to Middle Path as opposed to more pull-in parking spaces.
The Council decided that more research should be done on what the safest and most practical layout would be. However, some council members raised concerns that any changes made to Gaskin Avenue may add to the confusion with regard to where people can park, which direction to drive after they leave their parking spaces and in which directions bikers can go.
The Council also has plans to make improvements to other parks and playgrounds on Village property. Council members suggested bringing in Jason Elliott, a local architect, to provide quotes for other park and playground improvements on Village property.
Lastly, the Council also discussed the Village’s plans to participate in No Mow May — a nationwide campaign to refrain from mowing lawns — this year. “Residents requested that the village participate in this nationwide campaign to help promote sustainable yard management by making more pollinator-friendly spaces and reducing emissions from lawnmowers,” Mayor of Gambier Leeman Kessler wrote in an email to the Collegian.
The Council plans to waive their grass length requirements during the campaign to encourage residents to refrain from mowing their lawns, and discussed ways the College could also participate in the campaign. Council members suggested that the College could participate partially in the campaign by refraining from mowing the grass on the hill down to the Lowry Center, or in other peripheral areas such as that behind Bexley. However, the College will continue to maintain the central green spaces on campus for upcoming events such as graduation.