Moving to Plain City, Ohio? Here’s What You Need to Know.
Ready to call this Columbus suburb home? We’ve got all the information you need to know.
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Plain City, Ohio is a safe place to live and raise a family, with schools that perform above the National Average and virtually no violent crime to speak of. As with many Columbus suburbs, there are gorgeous parks with an emphasis on enjoying nature. If you’re getting ready to move there-- or have just recently moved-- we’ve got your guide to your new village life right here.
Plain City’s History
The area currently known as Plain City, Ohio was actually first settled by the Wyandot Indians, otherwise known as the Huron Indians. Originally from the Georgian Bay area and related to the Iriquois Indians, the Iriquois attacked and drove them out. Many of the Wyandot settled across Southern Ohio, including what is now Madison County where Plain City is located. White settlers drove them out during the War of 1812, and a few years later in 1818 Isaac Bigelow surveyed the town of Westminster. Residents changed the name to Pleasant Valley in 1823, but in 1877 the name was finally changed to Plain City. The name was lobbied by the citizens, who named their town after the Big Darby Plain where the town sits.
Early growth was slow, but the railroad sped things up in the 1850’s. By the early twentieth century, most folks in town made their living from the railroad, primarily through the meat trade. The town boasted an opera house and a fine clock. Both World Wars increased Plain City’s population, especially after automobiles became readily available after the close of WWII. Folks began commuting to Columbus for work, and later in 1979, to the nearby Honda factory in Marysville. There was an Amish settlement near Plain City, but it dissolved in 2011.
Where is Plain City, Ohio?
Plain City is located in both Madison and Union Counties along Big Darby Creek. Eight minutes from Dublin, Ohio-- a rather well-to-do suburb of Columbus-- the village sits at the juncture of U.S. Route 42 and State Route 161. Not quite two and a half square miles large, Plain City retains the small-town feel. It also follows Eastern Standard Time, including Daylight Savings Time. Columbus is just over 24 miles away, which translates to approximately a thirty-minute drive in prime conditions.
Other nearby towns include Dublin, New California, Unionville Center, Lake Darby, Hilliard, Marysville and Lake Darby. All of these places are three or less miles away-- mere minutes of driving under good weather and traffic conditions!
What do I need to know about the local government?
The first thing to know about Plain City’s local government is that it-- like most of the other Columbus suburbs-- operates on a village council format. The Village Council is comprised of six members-- including the mayor-- and meets on the 2nd and 4th Monday of each month. The public are welcome to attend and are encouraged to become active members of their community through participation. Anyone can contact the Fiscal Officer to be placed on the agenda, and will be given 2 minutes per topic to address the council. Meetings are held in the Pleasant Valley Township Fire Station Community Room.
The Village Council overseas several committees concerned with local issues, such as design, parks and recreation, zoning and more. The public are encouraged to serve on these committees as well.
You can read the Legislation and Code latest updates on the Plain City village website, as well as read the Village Council Meeting Minutes. They’ve also got a calendar with Public Notices posted as well. The local income tax of 1.5% used to be collected by RITA, but now is collected and processed locally in the income tax office in the offices on Chillicothe Street in the same building as the Water Department.
Trash collection is on Thursdays at 7am. Residents are required to be prompt about placing their trash in rigid garbage cans or trash bags not exceeding 32 gallons or 52 pounds in weight on the curb prior to 7am on Thursday. Recycling follows the same schedule, but is collected by separate trucks. All recyclables are able to be placed in the recycling bin at the same time-- residents are not required to separate their recyclables aside from trash. Bins can be picked up at the Water Department.
If you’re planning on building a new home or improving the one you’ve just purchased, you’ll need a zoning permit. You can apply for all zoning permits on the Plain City website, and find information on contacting the Zoning Inspector. You can also read about the Zoning Inspector’s role.
The Plain City Water Department has online bill pay and information on hard water on their web page. Bills are due on the 15th of each month. They also have information on waste water management, sewage do’s and don’ts, and FAQ’s. If you’re new to the area, please make sure to fill out the New Homeowner or Tenant Application.
What is it like to live here?
Residents here tend to be evenly split between those identifying as male or female, and politically they tend to be conservative. Nearly 5,000 people call Plain City home, and more are moving there every day.
Along with the population increasing, so too has the median household income. In it was $57,130 but currently stands at $73,351-- a major increase! And well above the National Average. The median individual income is a comfortable $39,921. Many of the households and individuals in Plain City make even more than the median--$149,000 for 35% of households, and 27% of individuals make up to $65,000 with another 27% making over that.
Plain City definitely lacks in racial diversity. An overwhelming 96% of the residents are white, with only 2% identifying as Asian and 2% identifying as being of more than one race. There appears to be virtually no African-American, Hispanic, or any other races present-- which as far as we’re concerned, is an opportunity to create diversity and shouldn’t deter folks from moving to the area and leaving their mark!
Around half of Plain City’s residents have some form of college experience or a Master’s Degree, which probably helps account for the higher wage earning. It’s also a relatively young area. Around 16% of the population are children under the age of 10, 15% are 25-34 years of age, 16% are 35-44, and only 17% are over the age of 65. Which means that around half of the population are earning more than a “beginner’s salary” or are earning a peak salary amount, and a smaller portion of the population is either too young to work or retired (or close to it).
The cost of living in Plain City ranks 93.9 on the index, which is slightly less than the National Average of 100. Average rent is $795/month, but most folks here are homeowners. 23% of residents rent their homes while a whopping 77% own them. The average home value is $202,200 which is higher than the National Average.
There is not enough data to determine whether Plain City is LGTBQ+-friendly.
However, Plain City, Ohio is a very safe place to live and raise a family. According to poles by Niche.com, 83% of residents knew there was crime but felt it didn’t impact them-- they felt very safe. 67% of residents felt that the police were highly visible and responsive. The majority of crimes reported-- according to City-Data.com-- were theft or burglary, with an emphasis on theft.
Places to worship here are primarily churches, including Methodist, Presbyterian, and Roman Catholic.
There is some tornado activity around Plain City-- around the state average but 29% higher than the National Average. Earthquakes-- while rare-- register around a 5 on the Richter Scale and originate well over 100 miles away.
Are there schools and a library?
There are four schools in Plain City, all of them scoring above the National Average. Plain City Elementary School teaches preschool through 4th grade, with around 600 students with a student-to-teacher ratio of 18:1. 85% of students are proficient in math and 78% in reading, with the rest either below proficiency or above and in the gifted program.
After that, students move on to Canaan Middle School for grades 5 and 6. The student-to-teacher ratio is 19:1 with a 71% proficiency in math and 73% proficiency in reading. They offer a gifted program, so some of the percentage of students score above proficiency levels. Then students move onto Jonathan Alder Junior High School, which is the highest rated among all of Plain City’s public schools. This school has a student-to-teacher ratio of 22:1-- which is a bit higher-- but it's proficiency ratings 85% in math and 81% in reading. They also have a gifted program, which accounts for some of the gaps in proficiency scores.
Jonathan Alder High School serves grades 9-12 with a student-to-teacher ratio of 24:1, the highest of all of the schools. Their test score proficiencies are very different from the rest, with a low 67% in math but a secure 82% in reading. This is also the largest of the schools in Plain City, serving over 600 students and growing. AP classes are offered, with 14% of students enrolled in them. Their average SAT score is 1330 and the average ACT score is 27. Most students who graduate from Jonathan Alder High School express interest in attending college in Ohio, often close to home.
The Plain City Public Library is the result of loving, hard, dedicated work-- three things which describe Ohio’s residents as well. Back in 1944, the Plain City Book Club sponsored the library’s creation as a branch of the Marysville Public Library. Their hard efforts paid off, and subsequent bequests from generous residents such as the late Richard M. Watson and Dorothy Grace Taggert throughout the years resulted in the creation of a debt-free new facility. There is a Reading Garden from another bequest, and the very book club that started it all donates a book every year to this day. The library has over 60,000 books and 4,000 audio materials, 7,000 video materials, and access to over 200 databases.
How can I have a good time here?
While we’re of the opinion that a library is one of the best resources for a good time-- the magic of reading, movies, and music is powerful-- we’d like to offer a few other ideas, as well.
When you move here, it’s a good idea to follow the Facebook group “Things to do in Plain City Ohio” and the Facebook group “Plain City, Ohio.” Each group posts things to do in the city, with the first focusing on restaurants and events in the area (including Columbus). The latter posts community notices and alerts but also a few community events.
Featured restaurants start with Der Dutchman Restaurant and Bakery, part of Dutchman Hospitality. They offer eat-in, take-out, and delivery. Take-out and delivery can be ordered online. Their menu includes breakfast, lunch and dinner and clearly marked food allergens. There are daily specials, too. And of course, their famous bakery provides sweets, breads, and baked goodness!
Yutzy’s Farm Market is Ohio Proud and serves up local produce, meats and cheeses and bulk foods. They’ve been in operation for over 40 years, and also offer Amish-made furniture. Check online for weekly specials to help with the budget!
If you’re a baseball fan, give the Phoenix Bats factory a tour! The tour is an hour long, taking you through the makings of a baseball bat from start to finish. You’ll get a free engraved mini bat at the end of the tour to commemorate the experience.
One of the keys to a great community is the parks, and Plain City has two nice ones! Pastime Park is nestled among oak trees-- some of them are old growth, too!-- and offers camping, playground equipment, a walking trail, professional disc golf course, and even an aquatic center with water-based fun for the whole family. McKittrick Park is over 5 acres and focuses on fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and picnicking. Both parks offer rental opportunities for parties and events.
We hope you’re as excited to move to Plain City, Ohio as its current residents are happy to live there. Once you settle in, drop us a comment and let us know if we missed any of your favorites!