KNOWLTON.WORK celebrates student work from the 2019-2020 academic year at the Knowlton School of Architecture at The Ohio State University.

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Jacqueline J. Gargus

PROJECT 1: The New Jesse Owens North Recreation Center

Jesse Owens, one of the greatest athletes of all times, was also a graduate of the Ohio State University. While a member of the Ohio State University Track and Field Team, Owens excelled at the long jump and sprints. At an Ann Arbor track meet in 1935, Owens set three world records and tied a fourth in the span of 45 minutes, a feat considered by many to be one of the most remarkable accomplishments ever achieved by any athlete. The following year Owens represented the United States at the 1936 Berlin Olympics (Hitler’s Olympics) where he earned four gold medals, the most of any athlete at the games. Through his athletic excellence, focus, sportsmanship, and poise he single-­‐handedly demonstrated the falsehood of Hitler’s claims of Aryan supremacy. In honor of its most famous alumnus, the Ohio State University has named the football stadium, the stadium plaza, and a number of ancillary recreation facilities after him.  Our project is to redesign and replace one of the Jesse Owens Recreation Facilities with a new building, one more worthy of its namesake. The new building will be around 60,000 SF and replace the old facility of 28,000 SF.

The Ohio State University has made it a priority to create a stronger presence and a more urbane edge along its northern boundary on Lane Avenue. The redevelopment of the North Campus Dormitory cluster was a first step in that direction, as was the construction of the new Student Resources Center.  The old Jesse Owens North Recreation Center makes an indifferent address to its prominent location. Hence, the decision was taken to replace the glulam shed of the old Recreation Center with a new building containing gymnasia, a pool, locker rooms, workout space, classrooms, a café, and related exterior space.

PROJECT 2:   The New Wexner Gallery and Art Center

In  the  aftermath  of  wildly  the  successful exhibition  at  the  Wexner  Center, Transfigurations: Modern Masters from the Wexner Family Collection, (Fall 2014), Leslie and Abigail Wexner have decided to establish a gallery to house a permanent  display of works from their collection. In addition to displaying works by recognized masters, like Picasso, Giacometti, De Kooning, Degas, and Dubuffet,  all of whom are well-­‐represented  in the collection, the Wexners  would like the new gallery to act as a catalyst in pushing Columbus  to the forefront  of the art scene.   Hence, there will also be community  outreach spaces, like classrooms,  a lecture hall, a café, a visitors’ shop,  and  an  area  for  children’s  art,  as  well  as  apartments  and  workspace  for  three  visiting artists. An additional requirement is an exterior space, which can be used to hold “Art Symposia” and workshops.

A site on Broad Street was selected, so that the gallery can contribute to the development of the Discovery Arts District, i.e. the area adjacent to the Columbus Art Museum, the campus of the Columbus College of Art and Design (CCAD), Columbus State, and the writer-­‐in-­‐residence program at the near-­‐by Thurber House.  The clients also recognize the historical importance of Broad Street in Columbus, as a collector of major civic buildings. They urge the designer consider the new gallery as part of this urban structure, and to use it to help stave off the erosion and dissolution of the edge of Broad Street.

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