Designing/Planning a Local Concept by Urban Avengers

While Columbus, Ohio has long been admired for its sense of community, distinct outer suburbs and downtown districts, we are particularly proud to unveil “On the Bricks” which is literally in the heart of downtown at High and Gay Streets.  High Street is currently and largely known for the Short North District which showcases block after block of fine eateries, popular pub houses and renowned art galleries and retail shops.  On the Bricks is just a few blocks away from the Short North and will focus largely on unique retail shops like those found in Chicago, New York City and other popular USA cities.



On the Bricks is inspired by the cobblestone streets of downtown Columbus and aspires to preserve the original, short brick cobblestone path that currently exists dividing the lots on High Street between Gay and Long Streets, the site of this new multi-living structure.



Columbus is well known for their historic cobblestone streets still in place today, and the design concept presented by Urban Avengers captures and honors that important part of local history and design.

Sketch 1

Bricks 1

Our design of a beautiful and unique, primarily brick 6-story structure housing some of the most hip and successful Urbanites in the country will maintain or, at the very least, incorporate the original bricks already in place on the Gay and High property.  Urban Avengers’ vision includes the current “bricks” being the central focus of a covered ground-level courtyard.

sketch 2

The concept of local design in Columbus, Ohio is as versatile as the city itself.  Columbus is the nucleus of several suburban neighborhoods that, while independent, still associate themselves with being from Columbus.  The city of Columbus has a reputation for diversity, friendliness, safety, cleanliness, and creating entrepreneurs.  Columbus is a hot spot where highly successful businesses have been born such as:

The Limited Brands (think Victoria’s Secret)          Wendy’s Restaurants

Jeni’s Ice Cream                                                             Cameron Mitchell Restaurants

Worthingon Industries                                                 Donato’s Pizza

White Castle Hamburgers                                            Max & Erma’s Restaurants

The citizens of Columbus have a great love for nature as is evident in the numerous metro parks throughout the city, and a rapidly growing trend of neighborhood community gardens to implement healthier food access to all generations and income levels.  Columbus has very distinct and diverse neighborhoods (such as Italian Village, the Short North District, German Village, Olde Towne East, Victorian Village, Franklinton, Bexley, Minerva Park, etc.) and is continually moving towards revitalization and improvements of these areas and more.

On the Bricks is a creation that combines all of these qualities of Columbus city-living, greenspace, urban shops and eateries and incorporates them into one legendary, mini-city location in the heart of downtown for a perfect balance of life, health, work and play.


The courtyard will feature beautiful hanging garden plants to capture our local agricultural essence and staying in spirit with the rooftop residential community garden and green space, giving the residents a communal feel of ownership and personalization.  We envision the first floor courtyard also featuring a breathtaking fountain and local artistic talents with sprawling seating for visitors and residents to leisurely enjoy this covered outdoor setting.  Each residence will include a private balcony for residents to enjoy the outdoors and scenic view of downtown Columbus.

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Due to its soaring employment opportunities and successful creation of numerous entrepreneurs, Columbus is drawing national and international professionals to work, live and play here.  Columbus is a magnet for new talent as showcased by just being voted the “2015 Intelligent Community of the Year” by the Intelligent Community Forum, based on our relentless embrace and pursuit of new ideas.  As professionals from all over the world land in Columbus, they will want to live, eat and play in the heart of the excitement that Columbus brings to life and that means living in the heart of downtown!  Living in downtown Columbus has also become a bucket list item for many Columbus natives.  The central location and convenient access to all freeways makes it a hot home spot no matter where your office environment may be located.  Use of bicycling and public transportation in Columbus is on the rise and with the recent addition of the FREE “C-bus” throughout the downtown, Columbus is highly comparative to other large USA cities in this regard.

On the Bricks brings to life the desire of many Columbus natives who crave the excitement and energy that accompanies shopping in the downtown atmosphere.  The mix of retail storefronts at On the Bricks will showcase both vintage favorites as well as new blends of shopping flavors.  As Columbus continues to soar as an urban stand-out known for our ever-growing variety of exquisite eateries and popular taverns and nightclubs, On the Bricks will feature an iconic rooftop bar which will be the new favorite spot to hit any night of the week.  On our proposed rendering “On the Bricks” is let out from the building overlapping the upper third floor and the rooftop green space so the name greets everyone and people know exactly what you mean when you say I live “On the Bricks!

Designing & Planning Local Development: “The Elm Plaza on High”

High St. view & key of The Elm

High St. view & key of The Elm

Gay St. View and sight of mural for The Elm

Gay St. View and sight of mural for The Elm

Elm Plaza

The Elm Plaza on High is located on the southwest corner of E. Gay Street and High Street as well as the southwest corner of E. Long Street and High Street.

Along the first floor of the building where the retail stores are located, we would like to incorporate retractable, glass panels as frequently seen in the Short North District. These panels give shoppers in the retail space a more modern shopping experience. The brick used to construct The Elm will be a red similar to that used on new buildings on Ohio State’s campus (think Ohio Union, or Park Stradley), the purpose of this is to pay homage to Ohio State, which not only represents Columbus, but also the state of Ohio as a whole. The residential area will be on the floors above the plaza and the retail area.

Moving up to the 4th story, two residential buildings will be separated by a plaza on Elm Street that will run from High Street to the back of the complex. Our team wants this plaza to be the main focus for our design, as it will reflect all the qualities that define “local” in the city of Columbus context. For example, since the plaza will have access from High Street, the area will be open to all people, not just patrons of “The Elm Plaza on High.” The citizens of Columbus are very friendly people who are extremely engaging, so it is only appropriate that our plaza is accessible for everyone. Also located in this plaza will be local, such as Jeni’s Ice Cream or even extensions to well rooted Columbus restaurants such as Thurman’s

or The Ohio Deli. Also, we’d like to incorporate newer restaurants founded here so that along with well established restaurants, new restaurants can have an opportunity to establish themselves in Columbus. Retail stores run throughout the bottom floor of the plaza, these stores will be Ohio based boutiques such as Sole Classics, Kingsrowe, and Homage; as well as local athletic merchandise retailers (i.e. Columbus Crew, Blue Jackets, Clippers, and Buckeyes). By having retail spaces mixed in with residential areas, our team feels like the plaza comes off as fashionable AND progressive. Over the last few years, Columbus has emerged as a national fashion hub, hence why the plaza features a great deal of retail space.

We would like to invite local artists such as Columbus’ very own Giovanni Santiago to design and create murals across the Long St. and Gay. St sides of the building. If you take a walk along High Street through the Short North District, you will immediately notice how artsy Columbus is. The Elm Plaza on High will be a testament to this creative aspect of Columbus.

5 Beers And A Coke, Local Neighborhood Food Environments

4thThe Weinland Park community is home to a highly crowded grid of housing. Fourth Street Farms offers the most green space in the area. Located between Summit and Fourth Street, it hosts a high density of traffic, and large housing options making it a large population. The lighting seems sporadic, and the sidewalks are square against the road with no real set back or quality width. Secured parking appears widely unavailable, resulting with people relying on walking and public transportation like COTA.


A trip to the nearest grocery store requires heading to 7th and High to stop at the Kroger on the corner. Between there lies numerous small corner stores, as well as numerous previously closed stores. 4th Street Farms finds itself the healthiest option in numerous directions for quality food. This is an alarming problem, seeing as this community is very high density, including numerous families that deserve a quality sustenance.

The number of local stores within walking distance gives a false promise of food security. Unfortunately, a rather large community has a lack of quality grocery stores that offer numerous foods for the area. This area appears to be a food swamp due to its high amount of convenience stores and plethora of fast food options provided to the west on high street. The one Kroger to the south is not adequate for the Weinland Park community compared to the other options offered to them.

The Beer Barn on 5th Ave is an example of wasted space that could be replaced with healthy option groceries.

The Beer Barn on 5th Ave is an example of wasted space that could be replaced with healthy option groceries.

Due to its high density area and lack of green space to work with and expand in, the best idea for the Weinland Park community is to work with what they are already given. As previously noted, numerous corner stores are home to nothing, just empty buildings taking up space. Renovating these buildings up to code and moving small, local groceries stores into these complexes holds numerous benefits. It stimulates the areas economy, offers numerous jobs to local residents in that area, and provide closer, quality groceries to this food swamp. The introduction of deli’s and fresh vegetables, like ones such as provided by Fourth Street Farms, makes strides in the right directions for providing a healthier standard of living for Weinland Park. As a community that has already taken good steps in the right direction in the last few years, an introduction of small local business to the area is the step in the right direction, for private sector and families alike.


Quick stores like these highlight numerous corners in the area


Above is the community farm of 4th Street Farms, and just a portion of the work being done there


The Chaire of Pierre : Resubmission Activity 3 Designing/Planning “Local Development”

Uptown Gardens


Our sign is made of Limestone with the lettering and designs chiseled in. The designs represent Uptown Garden’s core values which are to be clean, sustainable, and to honor Ohio’s history.
Our sign is made of Limestone with the lettering and designs chiseled in. The designs represent Uptown Garden’s core values which are to be clean, sustainable, and to honor Ohio’s history.

Columbus has been spearheading its downtown urban development with a theme of preserving the historic buildings that are in existence and merging the surrounding buildings with progressive green innovations. The town has enormous pride in itself and the new development around High, Gay, and Long Street are reflective of this due to the quality of thought that has gone into the area. We believe that the buildings should display Columbus’s desire for a more sustainable and green model of design of buildings by having efficient passive and active HVAC systems, using sustainable and long lasting building materials, and having a green space and solar panels on the roof. Our Uptown Gardens multi – use building will attempt to cover all three of these desires in a pleasing way that fits in the existing area and also encourages similar development in the future.

The arches on the front façade of the building facing east serve two purposes. First is for the aesthetic property of Columbus being the ‘City of Arches’. We like keeping this theme going along because it makes Columbus stand out from other cities and even if it is not anything astounding, it is still something Columbus can call its own. The arched windows are also grouped in three to represent Long, Gay, And High Street. The second purpose is that the windows will be set back in the arches at a scientifically determined depth so that it provides optimal shading from the sun at the peak hours of the late morning in the summer reducing the energy needed to cool the building, while also allowing some light in for the winter to help heat the windows.

The materials we are planning to use are brick, limestone, and energy efficient glass. The brick ties the building to the road that will be going underneath the building and connecting the access roads to the parking garage. It is symbolic of how this building will try to tie the existing area into the new building. The use of limestone in the arches and columns will show how this building will be built to last a long time and exemplify the solidarity of the structure. The two large columns bordering the side extremes of the front façade will be symbolic of supporting the green space on the terrace and the solar panels on the roof that will reduce the carbon footprint of the building over a long time. The main goal of Uptown Gardens is to create a long lasting structure the will tie into the existing area while creating the least amount of disturbance on the environment as possible.

Front View: High Street


The front side of Uptown Gardens will face High Street. With multiple stories used for retail, the bottom portion of the building will be made with brick along with glass doors and windows. The upper half of the retail section will be used for apartments also being made out of brick. We have created tall pillars made out of limestone to separate the retail sections. The center of the first floor will have a tunnel entrance to the underground parking area.

North Side: Long Street


South Side: Gay Street


The north and south view facing Long and Gay Street will give the tenants’ and the people of Columbus additional access to enter our Uptown Gardens. We wanted to reassure the tenants that no matter how busy the retail stores became, they should not have any issues entering their apartments; also creating a better flow for the retail stores and eliminating a clutter of people entering and exiting the stores. We really focused on creating a symmetrical perspective for each side of the building. We strategically placed our variety of windows all around so all the occupants could gaze at downtown Columbus at any given time.

Top View


For the rooftop of Uptown Gardens, we first and foremost wanted to make sure we could supply our apartments and retail stores with renewable and clean energy. To achieve this, we covered the roofs of the apartments with solar panels, and decided upon this so they can be on the highest point of our complex to capture the most direct sunlight. For the balcony experience, we wanted to try and capture a sense of community for our tenants, and did so by creating a community garden, as well as an individual garden square per apartment, and a greenhouse to access year-round. As well as the gardens, we have created a washing station for the tenants to have easy access to wash their fresh food without having to worry about making a mess in their own kitchen. Lastly for recreation, we made an outdoor kitchen space, infinity pool to overlook scenic downtown Columbus, as well as a park for kids and families to enjoy.

Explore Nation A3: Designing/Planning “Local” Development

Columbus Local can be described through aspects such as


Elegant, distinguished, prominent, classic, notable, significant



Flowing, converging, meandering, beautiful, peaceful, serene


Brick and Mortar

Stable, unwavering, steady, secure, sturdy, firm



Artistic, creative, innovative, imaginative, expressive, alluring


“Old Meets New”

Refined, historic, converging, mixed, contemporary, evolving, traditional



Accepting, positive, diverse, united, complex, spirited



Strong, unwavering, structured, important, powerful, symbolic


Little Big City

Comfortable, sizable, reassuring, intriguing, inviting, opportunistic


doc2Design aspects from Columbus preexisting buildings are prevalent in the sketch ups that we were able to do. Specifically, arches in the former “Arch City” are important to making Columbus have its own personal sense of style again. Columbus feels generic and doesn’t need to if it is able to utilize existing features and incorporate them into original design – you won’t need “New York Style” living advertisements, you’ll want “Downtown Columbus Style” living.




Incorporating these designs into the Edwards Development Company’s building, as we have called it “The Confluence,” is simple. If trying to stick closer to the design, only simple alterations have to be made, such as adding arches over windows or adding a more aesthetically-matching ridge that most historical buildings in Columbus have. The sign would be a great contrast, Imageutilizing copper letters and a giant glass “e,” showing off the arch design in a modern, elegant style. The “e” would be able to light up with LED lighting theoretically and change colors.

The Confluence’s northern half, near doc3the intersection of Long and High, appears to be built in a more luxury, traditional building style that reflects the buildings over the I-670 cap, according to the sketch. We chose sandstone and dark brick as building materials because of the Scan_20150914Ohio sandstone quarries, particularly the one in Amherst, and the dark brick which reflects many of the buildings in Columbus that have dark brick, whilst providing a clean, modern contrast. The “x” between the arched retail fronts signifies where the lights, based on the arches from the Short and Old Norths would go. The lettering on this half of the building would be a more sleek, elegant design that reflects and is in tune with the

14southern half of the building, but would provide that formal and luxury living aesthetic. Trees in front of the buildings would be replaced with the native red buckeye tree, an Ohio favorite that blooms beautiful flowers and matches the theme of “red” that people think of when thinking of Ohio. To continue the theme of arches, the red buckeye tree’s leaves naturally curve, making a succession of them appear as arches down the street.


In conclusion, the city of Columbus was founded at the confluence of the Olentangy and Scioto Rivers; similarly, the plot between Gay St. and Long St. sits at the confluence of downtown and the rest of the city. Due to this very important aspect, we decided to name the new apartment complex The Confluence. This name not only sounds interesting and compelling, but it also symbolizes many different features of the city itself. As has been said before, Columbus has many notable characteristics, one which has a heavy emphasis on arches. Anyone can see that the arches throughout the city are a very prominent feature; therefore, we designed the windows, storefronts, signs, and landscape to include this classic, elegant, and well-known structure, bringing the city back to its original nickname “The Arch City.” This aesthetic design allows for an original, less generic feel to Columbus.

Additionally, Columbus is filled with a mixture of old and new buildings. We decided to include the convergence of traditional and modern architectural elements in the design, allowing us to incorporate minimalist details alongside more traditional features. We have both modern and traditional materials in our design of the apartment complex. Some traditional materials used, including limestone and sandstone, are found in Ohio, along with our use of the Red Buckeye Tree. These intricate details give the apartments more of a unified and local design.

Art is also a major part of Columbus’s identity, so we’d also like to point out that the location of The Confluence would allow its residents easy access to a variety of cultural and artistic events, such as the Ohio and Palace Theatres, the Short North, and the night market located on Gay Street. This converges the artistic and practical parts of Columbus, putting more of the city’s creative features in the spotlight.