Category Archives: Architecture

Fall 2019

HDC President Charissa Durst receives Smart 50 Business Award

Since 2014, the Smart Business Columbus Smart 50 Awards have recognized the top executives of the 50 smartest companies in central Ohio for their ability to effectively build and lead successful organizations. All 50 winners were honored at a special celebration, and three organizations received specialty awards for their achievements in three category areas — innovation, impact and sustainability. Additionally, all guests were treated to a keynote address on what it takes to lead a successful “smart” company. Click here to read about what set the 50 honorees apart.

Charissa Durst posing next to her star at the Smart 50 awards reception in July

Five Oaks Historic Home project in the news

Click here to read about the project in the Massillon Independent or the here to read about it in the Canton Repository.

HDC teams with The Tradesmen Group to work on the Governor’s Residence

HDC is working once again with The Tradesmen Group, this time on a project at the Governor’s Residence in Bexley, Ohio. HDC had previously worked with The Tradesmen Group as the General Services Administration’s (GSA’s) representative during the construction phase of the exterior restoration of the federal courthouse in Toledo, Ohio. The two firms teamed to compete for the project to renovate/replace the existing pergola and portico roof on the rear elevation of the Ohio governor’s mansion, which was designed by Robert Gilmore Hanford, a Columbus-based architect, for industrialist Malcolm D. Jeffrey. The mansion  was built during 1923–1925 and the Jeffreys lived in the house until Malcom’s death in 1930, at which point it was sold to his sister Florence Jeffrey Carlile. In the 1940s, Mrs. Carlile expanded the house with an addition of a screened garden room on the first floor that led to a covered portico and extended into a wooden pergola. On top of the portico was a small rooftop terrace that served an expanded master bedroom suite. Upon Mrs. Carlile’s death in 1954, the house passed into the hands of the Very Reverend Charles U. Harris, who sold the house to the State of Ohio in 1957, and since then it has been used as the official governor’s residence — or a meeting site if the governor chose to live elsewhere.

The current project is to replace the wooden portico, which itself is a replacement of an earlier version, with a structure that will have a life cycle of at least 40 years. The roof over the portico will be replaced with one that will allow the roof terrace to be more actively used, and any necessary structural repairs will be completed.

North elevation of the existing pergola


HDC Finds Success Working as a Consultant to Engineering Firms

In the past five years, HDC has been teaming with other architectural and/or engineering firms on a variety of higher education projects. At The Ohio State University, HDC has teamed with Monks Engineers on a variety of infrastructure improvement projects that required some architectural support. For example, at the OSU Newark campus, HDC designed a screening wall for a new generator outside of Reese Hall and also designed a set of concrete steps for access up the hillside. On the main campus, HDC provided details and specifications for historic material demolition and repair to support the replacement of electrical panels in Orton Hall. OSU also asked HDC to design a corten steel screening fence for the equipment yard with a custom pattern, but later determined that an electrical project could not fund a custom fence.

Screening fence and access steps for the new generator at Reese Hall at OSU’s Newark campus

Model of the proposed screening fence for Orton Hall, whose design uses sedimentary layers to reference the building’s history as the home of the Geology Department. The model was built by CNS Engraving of Powell, and creatively uses cinnamon to obtain the rusty finish.

Ziti Graduates (barely) from Foundation Obedience Class!

Since the middle of August, Ziti has been in a weekly foundation obedience class held at the veterinarian’s office next door to HDC’s location in Clintonville. At the end of September, Ziti had her final evaluation. She lost points for sniffing while heeling (the beagle in her is absolutely fascinated with the smells on the floor), and she broke formation during her 1-minute sit-stay and her 2-minute down-stay (she only holds a stay when the reward is great — like dinner). She also didn’t manage to stand still the first time but did pretty well on the second try. However, she was perfect coming when called, which the instructor said is the most important command to know. So, overall, she scored about a 75. Charissa’s husband, Don, noted that Donut did much better at her graduation evaluation; he had to be reminded that Donut was almost a year old at that point and had already been through two Puppy Kindergarten and one Basic Obedience class with another instructor.

Ziti waits patiently for her turn during the final exam

Ziti in her graduation cap and gown

However, Ziti didn’t just spend all seven weeks in class and doing homework. One of the class assignments was to visit a new place every week. So, Ziti got to visit Highbanks Metro Park one weekend and had fun splashing and posing.

Ziti wading happily through a creek at Highbanks Metro Park

Ziti poses on a log near the Olentangy River at Highbanks Metro Park


Spring 2019

HDC President Charissa Durst presents at Circleville Rotary Club

After the article on Ohio’s historic theatres appeared in the Ohio AAAMagazine in November, HDC received a call from Bob Sneed to give a presentation on historic theatres to the Circleville Noon Rotary meeting in January.

Charissa Durst with Ian Webb, President of the Noon Rotary (left) and Bob Sneed (right).

Woodward Opera House featured in Revitalization Magazine

HDC’s opera house project appears in the Spring 2019 edition of Heritage Ohio’s Revitalization Magazine.

HDC completes drawings of the Ballville Dam

In 2017, HDC was asked by Commonwealth Heritage Group to join their team to provide Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record (HABS/HAER) documentation of the Ballville Dam on the Sandusky River, which was scheduled to be demolished. After the team was awarded the project, HDC conducted research at the city engineer’s office in Fremont, Ohio, and looked through construction drawings, historical photographs, and inspection reports of the dam. The team documented the dam prior to its demolition and during demolition in the summer of 2018, and in the first quarter of 2019 completed the drawings

Construction of the dam started in 1912 to provide hydroelectric power to the area, but the Great Flood of 1913 almost destroyed the dam. The dam was rebuilt and expanded in 1914-1916 with a steam plant added in 1916 to boost production needs. The steam plant closed in 1929, was reactivated during World War II, and then was demolished in 1954. The City of Fremont purchased the dam in 1960 to divert fresh water for storage and renovated it in 1969 to treat fresh water. The City constructed a new water treatment plant in 2013, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources made plans to remove the dam to allow the Sandusky River to revert back to its natural state.

HDC historic architect Charissa Durst completed the drawings, Commonwealth Heritage Group historian Elaine Robinson wrote the background history, and Dietrich Floeter took the large-format photographs before and during the dam demolition.

Sheet 1 of 2, showing location map and overall plan.
Sheet 2 of 2 showing elevation and details.

Devon Pool Bath House nears completion

With a Memorial Day pool opening closing in fast, the work on the Devon Pool Bath House is nearing completion. All of the exterior walls and and the roof structure are up, and the remaining work consists of installing exterior wall and roof finishes and interior work. The wet weather delayed construction, but work is still expected to be completed in April with the pool scheduled to be open Memorial Day weekend. Some last-minute, change-order work included adding a manhole to access an unknown sanitary line tap and providing a new tap and pipe for a future pool equipment building, which HDC has also been commissioned to design.

The office section is ready for the cupola to be installed
The entry breezeway with decorative trusses and skylights

HDC starts work on Devon Pool Phase III

In January, HDC started work to design the final phase of improvements to Devon Pool. The project consists of replacing the two existing pool equipment buildings (one built in the 1930s and the other in the 1960s), replacing any pool equipment near the end if its life cycle, replacing the remaining old concrete deck, and making repairs to the toddler pool. The new equipment building will sit on the foundations of the existing buildings and enclose the space in between to create additional indoor storage space. Later this spring, the City of Upper Arlington will decide whether to retain the toddler pool as is, upgrade it to meet state health code, or replace it with a new amenity, such as a sprayground or splash pad.

Rendering of proposed street elevation of the mechanical equipment building.

OSU Cockins Hall Fourth Floor also nears completion

The renovation of the fourth floor in Cockins Hall at The Ohio State University for the Statistics Department reached substantial completion in March. The project started off as a fire alarm replacement project, but the scope expanded when OSU required the abatement of the asbestos-containing plaster ceiling between the fourth floor and the attic. OSU then required that the replacement ceiling not bear on any of the partition walls, to make future floor plan modifications possible without major construction. The Statistics Department then requested the renovation of the fourth floor to include a conference room named for a recent alumni donor. HDC was already working with Monks Engineers, a TEC company, on the fire alarm project and was tasked to lead the renovation work. This project consisted of alterations to the floor plan and new floor, ceiling and wall finishes along with the named conference room. During design, the existing 40-year-old air handling unit in the attic failed, and replacement of the HVAC system for this floor was added to the project, requiring alterations to an attic dormer and a new attic plenum to bring in sufficient outside air. Construction is scheduled to be completed by May to allow the Statistics Department to move back in over summer break.

This attic dormer was altered to provide fresh air to the new HVAC system.
The entry to the new conference room is waiting for the art glass installation.

Retrospective of HDC’s office beagles

The first office dog at Hardlines Design Company was Bagle the Beagle. Bagle came from the Delaware County Humane Society and of the six dogs available for adoption that day in 1993, she was the only one who didn’t bark. Bagle had previously been adopted but was returned because she was too afraid of the family’s son, and the shelter thought her original owner probably included males who beat her. Bagle was about a year old when she joined HDC, and it soon became evident that she was an alpha dog who loved to track rabbits.

Bagle the Beagle in 1997. She managed the office from 1993 to 2004.

At the end of 1996, a client in Athens, Ohio, who knew we had a beagle kept calling to see if we wanted to adopt a second beagle that was at Athens Pound Rescue. Sadie the Beagle came to the office over Christmas break and tried soooo hard to be Bagle’s best friend, but Bagle was not having any of it. As the alpha dog, Bagle expected Sadie to acknowledge her lead and do what she was told. I think Bagle expected this of the humans as well! Over the next few months, it was evident that Bagle was very unhappy at not being the only dog anymore, and she started limping and dragging her rear leg. Don’s mother’s daschund had died the previous year, so Don’s thought was to train Sadie to be a replacement dog for his mother. The Monday after Don took Sadie to Akron for the weekend, Bagle’s limp was cured and HDC’s employees were amazed at the spring in her step and the shine in her eyes, which they had never seen before. Bagle was perfectly happy to host Sadie for visits, as long as Sadie went home afterwards.

Sadie the Beagle in 1997. She visited the office from 1997 to 2006.

Bagle died of a heart attack in April 2004 at just over 12 years of age, probably as a result of chemotherapy for the thyroid cancer that was diagnosed in February 2004. Donut came from the Franklin County Dog Shelter in May 2004 as a wild eight-week old puppy who had been found on the street when she was four weeks old. However, she was so cute we spent the first year in weekly puppy training classes, trying to get her domesticated. Sadie actually came to the office for a visit and met Donut as a puppy, but you could tell Sadie was expecting to see Bagle. Just before she turned 12 in 2006, Sadie left us after developing a fast-growing stomach cancer.

Unlike Bagle, Donut had no concept of how to track rabbits. Donut’s DNA test indicated that she was 10-20 percent rat terrier, and I think the terrier portion was all in her brain. Donut loved to chase chipmunks and catch mice and play with them by tossing them in the air, which apparently is what rat terriers do. We said goodbye to Donut in December 2018 after her kidneys started to fail when she was almost 15.

Donut the Beagle in 2006. Donut’s reign lasted from 2004 to 2018.

Who will be the next HDC office beagle? That still remains to be seen, but it will likely be a puppy since Donut was the only beagle who was able to be trained to (mostly) come when called off leash. Stay tuned for updates!


Winter 2018

HDC President Charissa Durst an honoree at WELD calendar reception

Each year, Women for Economic and Leadership Development (WELD) recognizes a diverse group of 12 women in the central Ohio community who are high-impact leaders within their organizations; support the leadership development of other women; give time, talent and resources to their community; and invest in the growth of women-owned businesses. Charissa Durst was one of 12 women honored at the WELD calendar reception on November 1.

  
The 2019 honorees group photo (left) with Charissa Durst in front row far right and the September 2019 calendar image (right)

HDC completes draft report for Louisville airport sound insulation project

Since 2007, HDC has been working with the Louisville, Kentucky, office of C&S Engineers, Inc., on the sound insulation project for the Louisville Regional Airport Authority, part of the FAA’s Airport Noise Program to reduce the number of people exposed to significant aviation noise. Buildings around the airport located in an area above a certain decibel level are eligible to receive sound insulation to reduce noise levels inside their home. HDC’s role has been to inventory and evaluate buildings within the targeted decibel level zone and determine if the homes are eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. If the homes are deemed eligible, then HDC works with C&S Engineers to ensure that any modifications to the property for sound insulation will not adversely impact the historic property. All survey and design work is reviewed and approved by the Kentucky State Historic Preservation Office. HDC previously completed seven phases of work and is currently working on the eighth phase in neighborhoods adjacent to those previously surveyed.

  
An intact example of a Tudor Revival style house (left) and a building associated with the Keneseth Israel Cemetery (right)

Devon Pool Bath House project in Upper Arlington is getting out of the ground

The underground utilities are in, and the floor slab has been poured at the locker room building, which houses the toilets, showers and changing rooms. The masons worked outside until the temperatures dropped into the 40s during the day and 20s overnight, at which point a tent was erected over the structure. The sun alone has kept the interior temperatures comfortable enough for everyone to continue working. As the masons built the walls up, the plumbers and electricians followed close behind to install piping, drains and conduits.

  
View of the front of the Locker Room building (left) and view of the men’s locker room (right) looking toward the entry

Indian Mound Recreation Center is coming down and going up!

The Indian Mound Recreation Center was supposed to be a new facility, but the City of Columbus Recreation and Parks Department did not have enough funding for a completely new facility. Instead, HDC persuaded the city to keep the old gym — since it was in good shape — and repurpose portions of the remaining building for storage, mechanical space and some programming space. The new addition would house a second gym, new lobby space, expanded administrative offices and additional programming space. Due to the presence of poor soils that had to be replaced, an unusually wet summer, and changing municipal power requirements, this project got off to a slow start. The cold weather means this project will also have to be under a tent soon!

  
View of the partial demolition of the old facility (left) and the new floor slab with new wall going up at addition (right)

HDC says goodbye to Donut the Beagle (2004-2018)

Donut picked up an intestinal bug after Thanksgiving thanks to the melting ice and a not-so-robust immune system.  She was then stricken with pancreatitis. This one-two punch was too much for an almost 14 ¾-year-old beagle. An unknown neurological issue was causing lameness in her rear legs, and then it turned out she was in kidney failure on December 14 after testing OK for it just the week before. She had spent an hour at a holistic vet clinic getting blissed out with a chiropractic massage, acupuncture, and magnetic pulse treatment, and it was time to let her go.

  
Two favorite activities in 2018: snoozing at the office (left) and having fun at the park (right)

Click here for a copy of the 2019 Donut Memorial Calendar.


Spring 2018

President Charissa Durst Honored as a Progressive Entrepreneur

Charissa Durst was named a 2018 Progressive Entrepreneur Honoree at the Smart Women Breakfast on April 17, 2018. The award recognizes female entrepreneurs who have forged their own path and developed a company that has achieved substantial growth.  Charissa was honored for establishing herself as a leader in her field and among other women business owners, as well as for building Hardlines Design Company (HDC) from the ground up into an award-winning company that has earned an excellent reputation for its creative approach to architectural design and its love for the renovation of historic buildings.

Charissa Durst receives her award. (Photo by Jay LaPrete)

Demonstration of D/2

Cathie Senter gave the office a demonstration on how to clean masonry using D/2 Biological Solution, which is a non-toxic cleaner that can be sprayed onto masonry at full strength or diluted with water. We used bricks obtained from the Dawn Theater during the last field visit and confirmed that the brick featured black speckles that matched the original black mortar. The longer the brick was in contact with the solution, the cleaner it became. D/2 is also commonly used to clean historic gravestones in cemeteries.


Bricks from the Dawn Theater in a D/2 bath

Woodward Opera House Gets Partial Occupancy Permit

After 17 years, there is a light at the end of the tunnel! The Woodward Opera House project received partial occupancy at the end of March, which allowed portions of the building (the commercial sections) to be leased and occupied. Areas still under major construction include the theatre areas, which likely will not be ready until the fall season at the earliest. Charissa Durst and Brad Curtis have been working through the federal historic tax credit reporting forms as well as responding to issues brought up by the contractors and state inspectors. Many people have been asking about a grand opening, and we hope to have some news on that soon!


View of new main stair in the Promenade, April 2018

 
View of the Stage (left) and view of the Balcony (right)

HDC works with Commonwealth Heritage Group at the St. Louis Arsenal

Last fall, Commonwealth Heritage Group asked HDC to team with them on a project at the historic St. Louis Arsenal in Missouri for Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. HDC’s portion of the project was to conduct a conditions assessment and prepare repair and mothballing recommendations for when the Air Force transferred ownership of the buildings to the General Services Administration in the near future. Cathie Senter conducted the field work and recently contributed to the executive summary currently under review.
The Arsenal has a long history that began in 1827, when the site was used to manufacture and repair small arms and gun carriages for the Army as well as territorial militias west of the Mississippi River. It played a key role in settling the American West from arming U.S. troops during the Indian Wars of the 1830s to being a Union outpost during the Civil War. The Arsenal property is today a satellite to Scott Air Force Base and is highly secure, and all field team members had to be escorted and could not take photographs. However, the following historic images are already in the public domain and can be shown here.


Historic photo of Building 7, built 1849-50 as the Ordnance Coal House and now the Visitors Center.


Historic photo of Building 6, built in 1852 as the Carriage-Maker’s Shop and now demolished.

When the Boss is Away, the Dogs Will Play

When HDC President Charissa Durst attended the Women Presidents Organization annual conference in Los Angeles, Donut the Beagle stayed home to be tended by Charissa’s husband, Don Durst. Meanwhile, back at the office, the staff’s dogs made guest appearances.


Brad tries to teach Baxter the building code.


Megan’s Sherlock refuses to do any work and prefers to watch traffic.


Donut, who turned 14 on March 25, goes to Prairie Oaks Metro Park the weekend after the WPO conference and would rather be splashing in the water than posing for a photo.


Winter 2018


It’s Called a WHAT?

While attending Heritage Ohio’s 7th Annual Appalachia Heritage Success Stories meeting in December, Charissa Durst, Megan Claybon, and Cathie Senter got a tour of the Ohio statehouse. From the floor of the atrium connector you could see the underside of the soffits of the Greek Revival annex building, and what appeared to be Lego pieces on the underside. Cathie was able to identify these pieces as mutules, since she once taught a restoration class where they cleaned and restored so many wooden versions that they were all sick of the word.

Officially, a mutule is a rectangular block that hangs from the soffit of the cornice in the Doric order and appear over the triglyphs. They are likely a stone translation of the round pegs used to fasten structural pieces together when Greek temples were made entirely of wood. Even so, they still look like Legos pieces to me!

  

HDC Commissioned to Rehabilitate the Dawn Theater

The City of Hillsdale, Michigan, commissioned HDC in December to rehabilitate the Dawn Theater, a vaudeville/movie house that opened in September 1919. The building was renovated in 1938 with the addition of “Nu-Wood” acoustical paneling and again in 1970 when the brick façade and windows were covered with cement panels, which also unfortunately removed the stepped parapet. The theater’s latest use was a nightclub, where tiers infilled the sloped floor to make room for dining tables. Two rows of original movie seats still remain in the balcony. The goal of the rehabilitation is to restore the front façade and rehabilitate the interior for continued use as a banquet and meeting space.


The facade of the Dawn Theater as it looks today

The facade of the Dawn Theater when it opened in September 1919.

HDC employee Cathie Senter measures the slope of the parapet


Devon Pool Project Out to Bid

In Spring of 2017, the City of Upper Arlington commissioned HDC to make improvements to the existing pool house constructed in the 1950s. After a series of public meetings and presentations, the City decided to replace the existing building. The new building is scheduled to be open by Memorial Day 2019 with new shade structures and deck furniture provided this Memorial Day 2018. The new pool house will contain enlarged facilities for the staff, dressing rooms and interior showers, a concession stand with kitchen, and ample storage.


REVIT rendering of the new pool house


Clark County Exterior Work Almost Completed

When HDC was commissioned by the Clark County Commissioners to renovate their administration buildings in 2015, all parties knew that the wish list of work exceeded the available budget, especially at the historic courthouse and A.B. Graham building. HDC’s prioritized the work by securing the exterior envelope before considering interior improvements. HDC saved the county money by creating separate bid packages for roofing, windows, and masonry, negating the need for a general contractor and their markup. With the completion of the exterior work, County agencies are meeting to decide where the remaining funds should be spent and whether to appropriate additional money for the entire wish list.


Exterior of the A.B. Graham Building

Exterior of the Clark County Courthouse

Exterior of the Jobs & Family Services Building


Donut Defies the Cold!

Right after Christmas the temperature dropped to the teens and single digits. When it gets this cold, Donut’s paws usually start hurting after a few minutes when she walks through snow/ice. However, when she sees the sun shining through the window she just wants to go outside and run. Spraying her paws with non-stick cooking spray seems to buy more time outside when it’s cold. Here’s a picture of her enjoying the sunny weather and facing down the wind.


Donut on a rock at Prairie Oaks Metro Park

Historic preservation success: Stewart Elementary School opens!

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on January 6, 2015)

Yesterday marked the grand re-opening of the historic Stewart Elementary School in German Village, a project that Hardlines Design Company has worked hard to help Columbus City Schools complete. The renovated, 141-year-old building was redesigned to incorporate the latest technology and accomodate the needs of 21st-century schoolchildren, while retaining its historic character. Reviews of the school are positive, as evident from this article in the Columbus Dispatch:

Kelly Graham grew up in German Village and attended Stewart from 1987 to 1994. (Her husband will not let her forget that he once defeated her in the Stewart Elementary spelling bee, even though he was a grade below her.)

Graham said she appreciates that the renovated building retains its old charm, with high ceilings, wood floors and huge windows that teachers can open on nice days.

“I think it will definitely have a positive effect,” said Graham, 31, an instructional assistant at Stewart with two children attending the school. “The kids are now excited to use it.”

A group of Hardlines employees tours Stewart Elementary School shortly before it opens. Company president Charissa Durst is in the foreground. Photo credit: Jeff Bates


Hardlines President Charissa Durst co-hosts design:ROLLS this Sunday!

 

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on October 1, 2014)

This Sunday, October 5, 2014, Hardlines Design Company President Charissa Durst will be the “host” at the Lincoln Theatre, one of seven stops for the design:ROLLS bicycle tour of downtown architectural projects. The bicycle tour starts at 1 P.M. at the The Center for Architecture and Design, 50 West Town Street.

The itenerary includes the following stops:

Cristo Rey/Old School for the Deaf: Built in 1899 and renovated 2014

Columbus Museum of Art: Built in 1932 and renovated in 2012

Long Street Cap and Cultural Wall: Built 2014

Lincoln Theatre: Built in 1928 and renovated in 2009

Yellow Brick Pizza: Significant for yummy pizza!

Trautman/250 South High Street: Built in 2014

Land Grant Brewery: Built in 1921 as Capital Lift and Manufacturing Company, renovated in 2014

Tickets are still available at the Center for Architecture and Design website: http://www.columbuscfad.org/designrolls/


Hardlines’ Oyler School project wins rehabilitation award

(by Charissa Durst, posted on December 11, 2012)

Back in 2006, when Dick Krehbiel of the Roth Partnership asked me if HDC would be willing to join their team for some historic school renovations in Cincinnati, I said “Sure!” HDC would be the team’s historic preservation consultant and be responsible for the rehabilitation of the exterior enclosure, with emphasis on roofs and historic masonry and terra cotta. It seemed pretty straightforward. Little did we know that our work to repair the exterior of Oyler School would be part of an award-winning design project or that the school would become nationally recognized as a catalyst for turning around a poor urban neighborhood.

Oyler School was built in 1930 and designed by the prominent Cincinnati architectural firm of Samuel Hannaford & Sons. The building anchors the Lower Price Hill Historic District, which is located in the river valley to the southwest of downtown Cincinnati. The school’s impressive exterior was described in the National Register nomination as a “delightful blending of Art Deco and Italian Romanesque executed in terra cotta, brick, and Rookwood tile.” Statues of boys and girls executed by Rookwood are seated in various locations on the building.

View of the south elevation of Oyler School

In the mid-1970s, when Cincinnati Public Schools announced it would close Oyler, the Lower Price Hill community rallied to save their school. In the 1980s, the Community Council formed to give the community a voice in city politics and the neighborhood was listed in the National Register of Historic Places as Cincinnati’s largest historic district. Ultimately, Cincinnati Public Schools committed to a $20 million rehabilitation and addition to Oyler School.

Detail of terra cotta on the south elevation

HDC’s work centered around the restoration, repair, and replacement of the terra cotta details.  HDC’s design team researched the composition of the exiting terra cotta in order to find materials and methods for seamless repair and replacement. The team paid special attention to the different types of glazing finish the contractor would encounter, including monolithic (uniform solid), mottled (speckled), polychrome (having two or more colors on the same unit), and polychrome blended colors (varying colors are blended by method of surface application).

Falcon detail on south elevation

Ultimately, HDC designed and specified terra cotta work that work included removing, cleaning, and re-installing terra cotta features after the repair and reinforcement of the underlying structural system; repairing cracks and damaged glazing, and replicating missing/damaged items using glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC). HDC staff also made multiple visits to the job site to approve the quality of the mockups and to resolve hidden structural problems as pieces of terra cotta were removed for cleaning.

Capital terra cotta details

Oyler School was one of eight projects to receive a 2012 Rehabilitation Award from the Cincinnati Preservation Association. The event was held on Saturday, November 17, at the Cincinnati Zoo, whose renovation of the Reptile House also received an award. Charissa Durst and Bill Faciane represented Hardlines Design Company and were joined by representatives from the Roth Partnership, Cincinnati Public Schools, Oyler School, and the Lower Price Hill community in what may have been the largest turnout in the history of the awards.


Dick Krehbiel of the Roth Partnership and Charissa Durst of Hardlines Design Company (photo by Bill Faciane)

In tandem with the completion of its physical transformation, the school’s unique K-12 program targeted at serving the community is making national headlines, as American Public Media featured the school on four segments of its “Marketplace” program this year. Once again, Hardlines Design Company has contributed to the preservation of a historical community building.


Hardlines welcomes our new Director of Architecture, Brad Curtis!

(by Charissa Durst, originally posted October 29, 2012)

Hardlines Design Company is pleased to announce the hiring of Brad Curtis, AIA, as our new Director of Architecture. Brad brings 22 years of experience in architecture to the firm, with previous experience at large and small firms such as NBBJ, Lusk & Harkin, MKC, and Schorr Architects. He received his architecture degree at OSU when I was there as a graduate student, but he somehow managed to avoid being one my students.

Brad brings a wealth of experience and expertise to Hardlines, working for both public sector clients and private corporations.  Some of Brad’s projects include renovations for The Ohio State University, Newark; serving as Architect of Record for the new Richland County Jail; and overseeing the renovation of historic buildings into living spaces for seniors and for the hospitality industry. Brad received the AIA National Design Citation Award and AIA Kansas City, Missouri Award for his work on the Johnson County Adult Detention Center in Olathe, Kansas; as well as the 2003 AIA Dayton, Ohio award for the Salem & Grand Avenue Senior Apartments, which saved an abandoned historic building through renovation into a 70-unit senior housing complex.

In addition to all this, Brad is also working on becoming a certified PGA Golf Professional. We think we had a stroke of good luck landing him!


Lincoln Theatre Wins the Recchie Award!

(by Charissa Durst, originally posted December 9, 2011)

The Goldilocks Principle, or Third Time’s a Charm!

The James B. Recchie Award was established in 1984 by the Columbus Landmarks Foundation to honor those who have made exceptional advances in historic preservation and urban design in the central Ohio area. Since previous projects that received the award were designed by the most prestigious design firms in town, we here at HDC have always felt that the Recchie Award is one of the premier historic preservation awards in the state—and one that I’ve dearly wanted for the firm!

HDC began the addition to and rehabilitation of the Lincoln Theatre in 2005 with a master plan, with construction completed in May 2009. The 1928 Egyptian Revival theatre once was the heart of a thriving African-American neighborhood, but it had sat vacant for almost 40 years. The City of Columbus acquired the property in 2004 and recruited the Columbus Association for the Performing Arts (CAPA) to manage the building rehabilitation project. The Lincoln Theatre Association was formed with wide community support and a stated mission to “serve as the steward of the historic landmark theatre, as an incubator for talented, emerging artists.” This complex project was completed on such a fast schedule that when people asked what was our favorite part of the Lincoln Theatre project, we sometimes joked: “When it was over!” But today, we’d answer (this time, only half jokingly): “When we won the Recchie Award!”

Our path to the Recchie Award, however, was elusive, and the competition tough…

The 2009 Recchie:  Were we too small?
The Lincoln Theatre opened on Memorial Day of 2009, and we nominated the project for the Recchie Award by submitting a description of the project along with the benefits to the community. Five of the nominations were selected to be finalists, including the Lincoln Theatre, and needless to say, everyone involved was elated. The HDC design staff coordinated with the theatre staff of CAPA to show the three jurors around the building, and then we attended the awards ceremony the next day, with high hopes and crossed fingers. But the Recchie was awarded to the Ohio State University Thompson Library renovation, a large-scale, high-profile project to expand and modernize the beloved main library, one of the anchor buildings on the Oval at the OSU campus. We had to admit, the work was indeed massively impressive and well deserving of the award. So, we thought, maybe next year…

The 2010 Recchie:  Were we too big?
In 2010, we again nominated the Lincoln Theatre (thinking maybe 2009 was an anomaly), and the Lincoln again became a finalist. But this time, the Recchie Award went to a project on the opposite end of the size spectrum, the Franklin Park Residence and Gardens, a residential-sized project commended not only for its design but also for its community involvement and impact. Dozens of nearby residents came out to praise the gardens. Again, we had to admit, it was a beautifully executed historic house renovation, and one with an immediate community benefit.

HDC architect Vivian Majtenyi explains the Lincoln Theatre project during the 2010 jury tour

The 2011 Recchie:  Surprise! This time, just right!
In 2011, we decided to skip the nomination while we gathered more operating data about the theatre’s affect on the community. So you can imagine our surprise when the notification arrived that—for the third time—the Lincoln Theatre was an award finalist! When we asked who nominated the project, we were told that all nominations are anonymous, and in this case, only the name “Lincoln Theatre” was submitted, with no description or justification. This time, for the juror’s tour, HDC and CAPA each sent three people, and we highlighted the jazz academy on the third floor, the rooftop patio (missed on previous tours), and the diverse uses of the theatre.

The Jazz Academy’s keyboard studio (left) and the rooftop patio (right) (Photos courtesy of Brad Feinknopf)

We arrived at the 2011 awards ceremony at the Franklin Park Conservatory with subdued expectations, aiming to enjoy the presentation for itself. At the end of the evening, when Nancy Recchie announced that the winner was the Lincoln Theatre, we were stunned! After the presentation, we were congratulated by many friend and peers, who said the award was well deserved and long overdue.

When our group got together to talk about the process, we surmised that this year, we had done a good job on the tour of explaining what the Lincoln Theatre was all about. During the tour, juror Patty Stevens, Chief of Park Planning at Cleveland Metroparks, was amazed that the three design representatives from HDC were all women and marveled at how one firm could have architects, historians, and archaeologists under one roof. Juror Cleve Ricksecker, Executive Director of Capital Crossroads and Discovery District SID, was very impressed by how heavily the theatre was used for non-traditional events such as graduation parties and funerals, and Mark Feinknopf, an Architecture & Planning Consultant with Sacred Space Inc., was a former resident of Columbus who remembered being in the theatre before the renovation. He was particularly moved by its revival. The three jurors also commended the design of the newly inserted balcony, which has been very successful with audiences!

The performer’s view from the stage, showing the new balcony at the back (Photo courtesy of Brad Feinknopf)

The audience view of the Lincoln Theatre, from the balcony looking at the stage (Photo courtesy of Brad Feinknopf)

At left: Here we are, just before the official presentation of the plaques (the rolled awards we’re holding are for being finalists). Left to right: Todd Bemis (CAPA, VP of Operations), Charissa Durst (HDC, President), Laura Piersall (HDC, Project Architect), Alison Badowi (Kabil Associates, Structural Engineer), and Vivian Majtenyi (HDC, Architect)
At right: The 2011 Recchie Award plaque

Epilogue
Too small? Too big? Just right! That’s the Goldilocks principle, and for us, the third time quite unexpectedly turned out to be the charm. We were also given an extra award plaque to present to Mayor Coleman, in recognition of his support in securing the initial funding for the project; we’ll be giving the mayor his award in mid December.

And so, on a happy note, we here at HDC give a hearty thanks to all who contributed to the Lincoln Theatre renovation and operations, making this award possible. Be sure and check out the history of the Lincoln Theatre, and don’t miss their calendar for unique events and shows!

The Lincoln Theatre project team:
Architect: Hardlines Design Company
Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing/Engineer: Korda/Nemeth Engineering, Inc.
Structural/Civil Engineer: Kabil Associates
Acoustician: Acoustic Dimensions
Interiors/Furnishings: Williams Interior Design
General Contractor: The Quandel Group, Inc.

Also check out the announcement in the Columbus Dispatch.