COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The Columbus Art Commission is beginning the process of deciding what should become of the Christopher Columbus statue that once stood at city hall.

Using a crane, work crews removed the statue from the south plaza in downtown Columbus last summer. It was taken down in response to criticism over the Italian explorer’s violent history with indigenous people.

Nationwide protests led to vandalism of Christopher Columbus statues in a variety of cities last summer, with some people calling them a symbol of racism.

The statue has been in storage ever since as a part of the city’s public art collection.

Mayor Andrew Ginther called on members of the Columbus Arts Commission to find a new statue that embraces diversity, while also deciding what to do with the historic statue.

The committee meets at 9 a.m. the second Thursday of each month through August, and will be streamed on the City’s YouTube channel.