Category Archives: Historic Preservation

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 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.


Support historic preservation in Ohio – it’s the Wright thing to do!

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on March 3, 2015)

Wilbur and Orville may have been looking to the future with their work developing powered flight, but they also knew it was a good thing to support historic preservation – with their tax returns!

Supporting the Ohio History Fund on your 2015 Ohio state taxes is easy, tax-deductable, and a great way to show your support for your state! Donations from the Ohio History tax check-off are used to fund local history projects throughout Ohio through the History Fund grant program.

With the Ohio History Fund, Ohio citizens can help support our local and state historical sites and preserve significant pieces of our history. Funds donated through your tax-deductable donation go straight to funding local history projects. For just $8, the average donation and the price of a couple fancy coffees at the corner coffee shop, you can help repair a roof, preserve rare documents, or help connect local school kids to their Ohio heritage.

Where does your donation go? All donations directly support the History Fund, which was created to help fund local, regional, and statewide projects, programs, and events linked to the expansive history of Ohio. The program is a competitive matching grants program and requires successful grant applicants to have a matching funding source. For more information about the History Fund grant program and how to apply, visit ohiohistory.org/historyfund.

 


Don’t take Historic Preservation for Grant-ed!

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on January 26, 2015)

President Ulysses S. Grant knows his duty when filing taxes – he contributes to the Ohio History Fund on his state tax return.

Supporting the Ohio History Fund on your 2015 Ohio state taxes is easy, tax-deductable, and a great way to show your support for your state! Donations from the Ohio History tax check-off are used to fund local history projects throughout Ohio through the History Fund grant program.

During its first year of operation, the Ohio History Fund gave out matching grants to 11 projects, ranging from the digitization of rare, pre-WWII color movie film documenting small-town Ohio to improving artifact curation storage and even building public restrooms at Whitewater Shaker Village, allowing the site to be open for public visitation for the first time since restoration efforts began. Supporting historic preservation has never been so easy!

It’s simple to contribute – just check off the box on your tax return and fill in the dollar amount. Remember, your donation is tax-deductable!


Annie supports historic preservation in Ohio -so should you

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on January 13, 2015)

Annie Oakley, famed Ohioan, was known for being on the mark. Why should filing her taxes be any different?

Annie Oakley didn’t have to think twice about supporting historic preservation by donating to the Ohio History Connection (formerly the Ohio Historical Society) on her 2015 Ohio state tax return. Local communities and historical organizations throughout Ohio are greatly supported through the generosity of Ohioans. Just a small, tax-deductable, donation of $8 (a cheap lunch) helps keeps lights on, historic documents and collections preserved, and our children educated in the history and heritage of Ohio.

It’s easy to contribute – just check off the box on your tax return and fill in the dollar amount. Remember, your donation is tax-deductable!

Where does your donation go? All donations directly support the History Fund, which was created to help fund local, regional, and statewide projects, programs, and events linked to the expansive history of Ohio. The program is a competitive matching grants program and requires successful grant applicants to have a matching funding source. For more information about the History Fund grant program and how to apply, visit ohiohistory.org/historyfund.


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


Spring 2014

(originally posted by Andy Sewell on April 15, 2014)

Welcome to Hardlines Design Company’s Spring 2014 update! As I write this, it sure doesn’t seem like spring, with snow on the ground and 30-degree temperatures, but that just exemplifies how the weather was a big factor in our projects during the last quarter, with numerous weather-related schedule modifications. Despite the weather, HDC archaeologists managed to complete two field projects; more on those in another post. Other updates of note include the following:

HDC Completes Work on Mulzer Mill Plaques for Highbanks Metro Park in Delaware, Ohio

HDC recently completed the design of two interpretive signs for the Ohio Department of Transportation, Office of Environmental Services (ODOT-OES). The signs were created to commemorate the site of the former Mulzer Mills and an associated house located near the intersection of State Route 315 (SR 315) and West Powell Road, at the northwest corner of Highbanks Metro Park in Delaware County. As part of a mitigation effort for the construction and alterations on this intersection, ODOT-OES agreed to install interpretative signs to commemorate the former mill complex, whose foundation ruins were sited within the construction zone. These signs will be erected along the walking path along the Olentangy River in Highbanks Metro Park.

HDC used historic and modern photographs and brief descriptions in the design of the signs to allow for the best possible user experience. Potential sign designs were reviewed and improved over a series of meetings with the public until the text, photographs, and overall design of the signs were approved. High-pressure laminate signs were chosen over the traditional bronze plaque, as they allowed for images and more detailed written descriptions of the site. After the design phase was completed, HDC was able to work with Fossil Industries, a high pressure laminate sign company operating in Deer Park, New York, to have the signs manufactured. Because of the low cost offered by the high pressure laminate versus bronze, an extra sign panel for each sign was delivered to Highbanks Metro Park to provide a spare in case a sign is vandalized or destroyed by an act of nature. The weather this winter has delayed the final installation of the signs, but Highbanks Metro Park will have the signs installed later this spring.

HDC CRM staff attend GAPP conference

HDC was well represented at the Gas and Preservation Partnership (GAPP) Conference, held in the ballroom of the Fairmont Hotel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. A historian and archeologist from HDC attended the conference, which is aimed at formulating a working partnership between historic preservation professionals and the oil and gas production industry. The boom in natural gas production in eastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania has resulted in a substantial increase in hydraulic fracturing. or “fracking’” projects. Because these projects are currently exempted from federal environmental permitting, fracking projects are not legally required take into account any impact to cultural resources. To address the concern of preservationists about the impact of fracking on cultural resources, GAPP hopes to create a voluntary “best practices” approach for the fracking industry to follow regarding the treatment of cultural resources without requiring additional government regulations. HDC will continue to stay appraised of this developing partnership, and will continue to work to preserve and document cultural resources, hopefully with the help and support of the oil and gas industry.

HDC’S Camp Perry Project Nears Completion

Construction on HDC’s project at four barracks buildings and the historic chapel at Camp Perry in Port Clinton, Ohio, is now nearing completion after a slowdown due to excessive cold. The project involved replacement of the asphalt shingle roof with metal, new metal soffit, fascia, gutters, and downspouts at two barracks; and replacement of existing siding, door, and windows at the other two barracks. Exterior work for the historic chapel consisted of washing, tuckpointing, and resealing the brick masonry, along with repair/replacement of fascia, soffits, steeple vents, exterior doors, and entry steps. Interior work included painting the chapel space as well as replacing the aisle carpet and refinishing the woodwork. HDC was also commissioned to prepared construction documents for a new HVAC system at two of the barracks, which would be bid at a later date when funding became available. Construction started in August of 2013 with construction completion in mid-April 2014.

Hard to Believe, but Donut the Beagle turned 10 Years Old on March 25!

This event almost slipped HDC’s collective mind if it wasn’t for an email from her vet reminding us of her birthday and upcoming vaccinations.  The year 2004 went by very slowly with her weekly training classes and daily homework assignments, but once she stopped deliberately biting people, time seem to just speed by!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

As you can see in her 2004 photograph, Donut was like a cartoon of a “cute puppy.” This image was once posted on the Daily Puppy website and one of the comments received was “with that face she could get away with murder!” Well, she did get away with biting everyone who touched her but luckily we were able to get her to stop after she was 7 months old. In her early photographs, many people also commented on the “wild animal” look in her eyes.

Like Bagle her predecessor, Donut started going gray at the age of 5 in 2009. However, Sadie the Beagle didn’t go gray until she was 10. Our theory is that beagles (dogs) who are smart and worry a lot go gray by age 5, and those that don’t think about things too much, like Sadie, keep their color until sheer age catches up with them. Donut definitely calmed down by the time she turned one, which led one engineer to comment that she was like a totally new dog. In this Christmas photograph, Donut definitely looks calm!

In 2013 Donut was taken to one of the Columbus Metroparks on nice weekend days. After the recent polar vortex winter, Donut started going to a park whenever the weather was sunny and over 40 degrees Fahrenheit. We’ve learned that it takes a couple of miles to take the edge off her and get her to stop pulling at the leash, and after 5 to 7 miles she’s happily tired and ready for a nap. In this photograph, Donut also needed a long bath to wash the melting snow/mud off her!


Welcome to our new historian, Ben Riggle!

(by Andy Sewell, originally posted January 21, 2013)

Hardlines is pleased to announce the hiring of Ben Riggle as our new staff historian. Ben comes to us from a position with R. Christopher Goodwin & Associates, Inc, in Frederick, Maryland, and is well-versed in state and federal preservation laws and guidelines. Ben is an Ohio native, and completed his Master’s degree in American History with a concentration in Historic Preservation at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. Ben brings past experience with Section 106 compliance projects, Historic American Building Survey (HABS) documentation, and studies of Cold War-era military architecture to our office. We look forward to a very productive future with Ben in our Cultural Resources department!


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.


HDC Historic Preservation Work in the News

(by Andy Sewell, originally posted October 24, 2012)

Recently, HDC architectural engineer Bill Faciane was in the news, talking about our work with Toward Independence, a non-profit group in Xenia, Ohio, that is participating in a city-wide movement to renovate and restore downtown businesses. The group owns two buildings in downtown Xenia and became eligible for façade improvements through a Community Development Block Grant.The group contracted HDC to help restore the buildings to their original, historical appearance.

Originally, the buildings were covered in 1970s-era material after damage from a 1974 tornado that struck downtown Xenia. Like many things from that time, what seemed like a good idea hasn’t really held up in terms of lasting aesthetics! Through restoration of the buildings to their historical appearance, Toward Independence will contribute to the revitalization of downtown Xenia. This work is another example of the value of historic building renovation in revitalizing the downtowns of American communities.

You can view the video clip and read the accompanying news article here.