Downtown Concierge

Downtown Matters: "Bad" Alcohol Must Be Banished From Downtown


Downtown Matters Newsletter


Downtown Columbus

The relationship between disorder and crime is an obvious one, and downtown it manifests itself most apparently with public consumption of alcohol. Public intoxication leads to panhandling, public urination, assaults, menacing behavior and other problems. It also results in disorder that invites other criminal behavior, especially if the initial disorder escapes notice by the authorities. By tolerating what might be considered nuisance issues, the stage is set for escalating criminal behavior. 

The book, Fixing Broken Windows, documents the relationship between disorder and serious crime. Where cities and transit authorities take a "zero tolerance" approach to disorder, crime plummets. In New Your City, felonies declined by 75 percent in the subway system within four years of beginning such an approach.

While most retail stores in Downtown Columbus do not carry alcoholic products that tend to be abused in public (single servings of beer, energy drinks that contain alcohol, cheap bottles of liquor, "40-ouncers," "tall boys," cheap fortified wines and more), the one or two stores that do contribute to disorder in the area. Every store needs to refrain from selling the types of alcoholic products that create problems. And those business owners (and landlords) who continue to promote the sale of single-serve alcoholic beverages need to understand that the downtown community finds this practice unacceptable.