2018 Most Endangered Buildings
Year Built: 1942
Building Address: Oak Street & Grant Ave., Columbus
Original Use: Residential
Current Use: Residential/ Apartments
Building Condition: Good/Some Deferred Maintenance Needs
Owner: Columbus Metropolitan Library Board of Trustees
Owner Address: 96 South Grant Ave, Columbus
Owner Phone: 614-645-2275
Style and Significance:
The Grant Oak Apartments are one of the few examples of historic residential apartment buildings remaining in downtown Columbus. Sitting on a 1.25 acre site, the 130 apartments are an important and nearly singular source of attainable housing for downtown workers and students. The sturdy, brick buildings have vintage appeal with some ornamentation and large windows. Grassy courtyards with mature trees separate each building, creating a quiet rhythm.
Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) acquired the Grant Oak Apartments in 1992 for potential expansion of the Main Library. The recent library expansion did not necessitate use of the buildings so the CML Board of Trustees issued an RFP for redevelopment proposals in 2017. The Pizzuti Companies was selected in January 2018. The initial proposal called for demolition of the seven buildings for two new buildings with 120 apartment units and first-floor retail space facing Grant Avenue.
8.28.18 UPDATE: The developer presented a conceptual plan to the Downtown Development Commission that proposes reuse of four of the seven buildings and demolition of three to create direct access to the Columbus Metropolitan Main Library parking garage and to make way for a new 76-unit apartment building. We are pleased that The Pizzuti Companies is willing to approach this project with consideration for preservation of several of the existing buildings as well as the accompanying trees and landscaped courtyards. We are hopeful that such character is incorporated into the new plan as the concept is refined, and that relationship to the existing structures is taken into consideration.
Photos by Orbit Design & Richard Burry