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Columbus City Council Seeks Public Input On DORA In Arena District

 A man jogs past Nationwide Arena in Columbus' Arena District on July 10, 2020.
Ryan Hitchcock
A man jogs past Nationwide Arena in Columbus' Arena District on July 10, 2020.

As the Columbus City Council explores creating a designated outdoor refreshment area, or DORA, they want to know what questions people have about allowing an open area in the Arena District where people can drink alcoholic beverages.

City Council will hold a virtual public hearing today at 5 p.m. about the potential DORA in the arena district. There, they will not only inform those who attend about what a DORA is, the "do's and don'ts," but also field concerns about it.

Columbus City Council member Emmanuel Remy said the rules of a DORA are that someone can leave an establishment with a drink, but they can't go into a different establishment with the same drink.

"It's not meant to bar-hop necessarily, but certainly provide the opportunity before a game to enjoy a beverage on your walk down to the game ... whether it be at the Blue Jackets, the Clippers, Crew Stadium," Remy said.

Remy said not only will having a DORA be great for local bars, restaurants and breweries, but it will also be a positive look for the city.

"We are a progressive, growing, vibrant city, and this is just one more way to demonstrate that," Remy said. "We feel that this will be a nice shot in the arm, especially coming off of a pandemic."

Columbus's Arena District would not be the first to have a DORA. Other cities that will implement or have already implemented DORAs include Worthington, Dublin, Hilliard and Powell.

Remy said the city council plans to vote on DORA July 12.

Michael Lee joined WOSU in 2021, but was previously an intern at the station in 2018. He is a graduate from Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism where he obtained his master's degree, and an alumnus of Ohio State University. Michael has previously worked as an intern at the Columbus Dispatch and most recently, the Chicago Sun-Times.