Many people do not know it but Columbus as one of the most progressive cities in the world for paving streets with block pavers. In the mid 1880’s the city had less than 8 miles of block paved roads. With the passage of a law that allowed bonds to be sold to raise money for paving the city quickly added another 80 miles of paved roads in a few years. Among the blocks being used were Hallwood pavers which was owned by local businessman John Hallwood.

Today we still see some side roads in the full block paver / brick glory in German Village, Italian Village, Victorian Village, Harrison West, Marion Village, and parts of Clintonville. The block pavers were laid as far south as Greenlawn Ave (and many streets south), as far east as Parsons Ave….and many streets east, as far north as Henderson Road and as far west as the Hilltop. While examples of these streets may be hard to see, very few people in Columbus fail to drive over them at least once per week, if not every day.

I found this example at the intersection of 4th St. and 9th Ave where construction is taking place. You can see that over 100 years later, the block pavers are still doing their job holding up the streets (I wonder how many times the blacktop has been redone here over the last 60 odd years.

brick bed 1

brick bed 2

And not too far away on Victorian Village, I saw there pavers that were stacked up awaiting some work to be completed so they could be reset in the street they have called home since at least 1890. As tempting as it might be to pilfer from these piles when you see them, don’t even a century after the fact, this is still city property and if these brick / blocks disappear so does the historical legacy of the pavers connecting this street to its past.

Bricks 3

And finally, on my street in Clintonville, we have several driveway entrances that were not concreted or asphalted over and you can see the block pavers that were laid down on our street between 1920 and 1928.

Brick 4