Esplanade construction will force closure of street between East Main Street and East College Avenue
Starting Wednesday South Willow Street will close between East Main Street and East College Avenue. That portion of the road will be closed until Monday, April 22, for construction on Kent State University's Esplanade project. That work is expected to include the movement of the May Prentice House on March 20 as part of the Wick Poetry Center relocation to the Esplanade. City and university officials are weighing the idea of permanently closing this stretch of Willow Street.
Kent State, city officials reviewing possibility of closing section of street between Main Street and College Avenue
Now that Kent State University owns much of the land surrounding it city and university officials are considering permanently closing a portion of South Willow Street. Since 2007 Kent State has spent more than $9 million to either outright buy properties or property options in the neighborhood west of campus for the Esplanade extension. In total, including the house sale approved Wednesday, the university will have acquired 43 properties in that neighborhood — including every property but one lining both sides of South Willow Street between College Avenue and Main Street. Kent City Manager Dave Ruller said university officials haven't yet formally asked the city to consider closing the street, but both sides are reviewing the idea. "They'…