14:17 PM

Slideshow: Ohio State updates new development along North High Street

Members of The Ohio State University Board of Trustees Master Planning and Facilities Committee reviewed new renderings Thursday that detail the design of the transformative Arts District and 15th and High Street projects.

“This is indeed going to be the new front door to the university,” said Alex Fischer, chair of the Master Planning and Facilities Committee.

The two projects are separate but complement one another. Campus Partners is leading work on the east side of High Street to bring retail and office space to the corridor while the university’s plans for the west side of High Street continue to progress through design of an Arts District featuring performance spaces, academic spaces, student gathering and support spaces along College Road between 15th and 18th Avenues.

The Arts District on campus envisions high-quality, modern learning environments for interaction across arts disciplines. Included are new facilities for the School of Music and Department of Theatre, which will feature a home for the new Moving Image Production program. The Arts District is part of Framework 2.0, a plan for the physical environment of the Columbus campus guided and informed by Ohio State’s Time and Change strategic plan.

“This is nothing short of spectacular,” said Trustee Timothy Smucker. “This is all about the culture of the university.”

The $160 million project will also extend Annie and John Glenn Avenue from College Road to High Street and is expected to finish in 2021.

Alex Fischer, chair of the Master Planning and Facilities Committee
This is indeed going to be the new front door to the university.
Alex Fischer, chair of the Master Planning and Facilities Committee

“The gallery space along College Avenue will be really dramatic when completed,” said Keith Myers, Ohio State’s vice president of Planning and Real Estate.

Campus Partners, the university-affiliated nonprofit, has an equally dramatic vision for its 15+HIGH project. One of the renderings presented showed the new building that will serve as the home of WOSU Public Media.

The development includes a new public space, University Square and development of a “signature building,” envisioned as a hotel, featuring direct sightlines to The Oval and William Oxley Thompson Library. A reimagined Pearl Alley will serve as a retail corridor with new stores and restaurants.

“Pearl Alley is the cooler, hipper space,” Myers said. “It will be a completely different experience than the Pearl Alley people are familiar with today.”

The 15+HIGH project has begun public improvements that increase pedestrian safety, facilitate vehicular traffic and improve stormwater management. Additional public infrastructure improvements are being planned and will begin construction as well in 2019.