If this were a private developer purchasing buildings from a private entity and proposing redevelopment, the story would be quite different (although my feelings would still be the same about the result). Here, however, we have the city's downtown development corp (technically private, I suppose, but they should have a comprehensive vision for downtown) buying buildings, emptying out the tenants, throwing some paint up on the faux facade, and then coordinating their demolition. I see that as unfortunate. I see that as lacking vision.
If they removed the facade and truely investigated reuse of the building and then still determined that it could not be reused, that would be one thing, but I am not convinced redevelopment was fully explored. Historic buildings have significant incentives for redevelopment (like the historic tax credits the LeVeque, Atlas, and Seneca have all tapped) and they add to the character and sense of place of Columbus. Too much has been demolished in Columbus, so every building is that much more valuable.
Here is a picture of the original facade--unique and imposing. I have seen many faux facades removed, and only once experienced a case where the original facade was not salvageable. Take a look at the Schofield Building in Cleveland; a thin 12-story building that had extensive ornamentation scrapped off during its 1972 cladding and yet developers press on with an impressive revitalization plan.