Century 21, by Thomas Beeby

31 – Century 21 Office Building

Thomas Beeby was dean of the Yale School of Architecture from 1985 until 1992, and director of the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 1980 to 1985. He is chairman emeritus of HBRA Architects in Chicago – for forty years he was the principal who oversaw the planning and design of projects that included the Harold Washington Library Center in Chicago and the Bass Library at Yale.

Beeby was also one of the Chicago Seven – “In 1976, a group of Chicago architects joined forces to start a postmodern group in protest of a Miesian architectural movement taking over Chicago. Believing an art exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art, One Hundred Years of Architecture in Chicago, distorted reality because of the strong emphasis on Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the architects began planning their own exhibits and shows. This proved to be the impetus for their national recognition.” – From the WTTW website

Take me to Century 21.
Century 21, by Thomas Beeby

32 – AT&T Switching Station

Architect Paul Kennon wrapped existing and new portions of this building with a reflective façade that blends into the neighborhood by reflecting it.

The colorful heating and air conditioning system intake and exhaust pipes on the west side of the building are one of the most frequently photographed and iconic architectural details in Columbus.

Like Eliel and Eero Saarinen, Paul Kennon’s son also designed a building in Columbus, the Learning Center on the north side of town.

Take me to the AT&T Switching Station.
Century 21, by Thomas Beeby

33 – Alley Walkway Project

The pedestrian alleyway improvement program continued the spirit of the Streetscape project and features rhythmic sidewalk brick paving pattern, landscaping, and lighting. Alley projects can be explored on the 400, 500, and 600 blocks of downtown Columbus, featuring granite-topped benches, goose-neck lighting, and English Ivy ground cover along with flowering perennials planted on trellises.

Some who donated for the name-a-brick program chose intriguing or humorous words for their brick, so be on the lookout for those.

The walkway project was managed by William Johnson of Seattle, who also created the master plan for the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Johnson was Dean of the School of Natural Resources at the University of Michigan from 1975 to 1983.

Crack the Whip - Saylors

34 – Storefront Project

The Irwin-Sweeney-Miller family was pursuing a vision, and retained architect Alexander Girard to renovate the Victorian storefronts on the Columbus main street — Girard used “daring” paint schemes to liven up the building facades — the family then engaged Los Angeles-based architect Cesar Pelli and a Chicago shopping-mall developer to draw up plans for a new “superblock” in the heart of the downtown. As it turned out, this effort would take several years, extending into the early 1970s. But through these and related initiatives, mostly concentrated in the downtown area, the Cummins Engine Foundation, the company, and its founding family played a central role in defending Columbus against the dis-investment and decay that increasingly were afflicting American cities in the 1960s. Indeed, the small southern Indiana city emerged as a showcase for contemporary American architecture.
Look up as you walk along Washington Street to see that there are still colorful Girard touches on the second stories of the buildings.
Century 21, by Thomas Beeby

35 – Streetscape

Architect Paul Kennon was given the challenge to create an attractive, accessible, pedestrian-friendly downtown. Michael Shirley and Michael Van Valkenburgh completed the design after Paul’s untimely death.

New street lights, complete with banners, provide increased illumination to sidewalks and storefronts. Concrete paver bricks create plazas at major intersections; brick sidewalks use contrasting colors for pattern; corner amenities include marble-topped benches, trash receptacles, and concrete planters with seasonal plantings, junipers, and pear trees.

Funding for the Streetscape project included an “Adopt-A-Brick” program, which allowed people, organizations, and businesses to have names or messages inscribed on bricks. Over 7,000 inscribed bricks have been laid in the Washington Street sidewalks.

Century 21, by Thomas Beeby

36 – Friendship Way

Cork Marchessi, a San Francisco artist, created this colorful neon light sculpture as part of the Friendship Way project, a partnership with sister city Myoshi, Japan.

It is most dramatic when viewed after dark when its neon glows in vibrant colors.

The bricks that make up the sidewalk are inscribed with the names of citizens of Myoshi who financially supported this gift to the community through their purchase.