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The Top 10 Architectural Designs of 2018

Walker Evans Walker Evans The Top 10 Architectural Designs of 2018Gravity 2.0 renderings via NBBJ, Hollwich Kushner and Acock Associates.
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For three years running, the local architects at NBBJ have now been recognized as the top designers in Columbus by the readers of Columbus Underground. This year is a bit different though, as they share the title along with Acock Associates and Hollwich Kushner for the multi-building “Gravity 2.0” project announced back in August by Kaufman Development.

“Over the course of almost a year, NBBJ worked with Kaufman to understand the overall planning for the site – options for layout, adjacency, height and composition for all of the components as an expansion of the Gravity ethos,” said Michael Suriano, Senior Associate and Architect at NBBJ. “Once those started to solidify, several other firms were engaged to bring individual design concepts to life.”

Hollwich Kushner, based in New York City, was tapped to focus on a five-story “shared-living” residential building on the south end of the site facing State Street, while Columbus-based Acock Associates designed the renovation and expansion of the Murphy Building located at the corner of McDowell Street and Broad Street. In addition to designing the 12-story mixed-use office and apartment building, NBBJ was also in charge of managing a cohesive design for the entire block, along with parking garage and landscape design elements.

“Each building has its own unique constraints and opportunities,” added Suriano. “So the design intent is to let each component building be an expression of its use, while using an architectural language that resonates throughout Gravity.”

The design teams were also tasked with representing the existing Franklinton neighborhood and its roots as both a historically blue-collar neighborhood and as an emerging local arts district. Additionally, a cohesive look and feel would be needed to mesh with the original Gravity development — which celebrated its opening phases with an arts-centric block party in August — located right across Broad Street.

“Overall, the design team was trying to take a position of how this particular block could be viewed through the lens of its context in Franklinton, but also be an extension of the Gravity ethos, which is rooted in intentionality, well-being, self-expression and community impact,” added Suriano. “We learned a great deal from Gravity 1.0 design-wise — we want the whole to be more than simply the sum of the parts, and something that has impact that contributes positively to Columbus’s urban fabric.”

For more information about NBBJ, visit www.nbbj.com.

The 12-story mixed-use office and residential building — Designed by NBBJ.

The 12-story mixed-use office and residential building — Designed by Hollwich Kushner.

The Murphy Building — Designed by Acock Associates.

Gravity 2.0 Site Rendering — Designed NBBJ, Hollwich Kushner and Acock Associates.

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