Powell is a small suburb just north of Columbus and not far from Dublin and Worthington. The community has a small-town feel and with plenty of amenities that give Powell residents a high quality of life. Its convenient location makes it an ideal place for professionals and families. A recent survey of registered Powell voters found that 58% of those responding liked their small-town atmosphere above everything else. Once considered just a bedroom community, Powell is now an attractive place for businesses giving it the best of both worlds.
Located between the Scioto and Olentangy Rivers, the land that includes present day Powell was once part of a 4,000 acre tract granted to James Parker in 1800 as payment for services during the Revolutionary War. Later subdivided and a 500 acre tract in Southern Liberty Township was deeded to Thomas R. Hall. The first settlers disembarked on the shores of the Olentangy River near the Liberty Presbyterian Church on May 1, 1801. By 1813, that settlement a few miles southwest became known as Middlebury, as the settlers came from the Middlebury Connecticut area.
In 1850 Thomas Hall opened a general store at the crossroads of what is today Historic Downtown Powell. The store served as a gathering place and a mail-drop off point. Around 1857, the settlement applied for a post office of its own. Granting such a request often required help from those in positions of some authority and in this case, that help came from Judge Thomas Watkins Powell of Delaware, Ohio. In appreciation for this assistance, the village was renamed Powell.
In 1947 Powell was incorporated as a municipality. The population remained stable at approximately 400 until the early 1980’s when residential development in the northern parts of the Greater Columbus metropolitan area reached Powell. Population growth within the City of Powell has been explosive over the past few decades. Population is now more than 11,000. Powell’s population is family-oriented and consists primarily of professional workers.
City Council adopted in 1995, a Comprehensive Plan Update aimed at preserving and enhancing the character of the City through the implementation of 6 primary goals: establishment of an identity as a rural greenbelt town; redevelopment of the town center; establishment of an access management program; achievement of a balanced land use mix; creation of a small town economic development program; and provision of limited City services.
Powell offers a juxtaposition of old and new, with both traditional and progressive businesses -- all within a leisurely walk. Take a step away from large retail centers and you will find a quaint village filled with the finest establishments: many creative specialty shops, charming antique stores, modern services, delightful dining options, festive special events and so much more. Great customer service, plenty of free parking, family-friendly parks, and safe streets.
A number of recreational areas are located within commuting distance of Powell including the 8,600-acre Alum Creek State Park, the 1,050-acre Highbanks Metro Park, and the world famous Columbus Zoo & Aquarium and Zoombezi Bay Water Park, consisting of an amusement and water park and gardens and naturalistic habitats for more than 6,000 animals.