You might have noticed a sprinkle of intensive construction and small-business closures on High Street in the past few years. Well that’s no coincidence, a lot of it is the doing of Campus Partners, the “urban revitalization” fist of The Ohio State University.
Campus Partners aims to create “distinct sense of place” across Ohio State’s campus by gutting student favorites like The O Patio & Pub and Too’s Spirits Under High to make room for a number of expensive apartments, parking garages and chain stores.
Ohio State is basically claiming that another Chipotle, Starbucks and a White Castle will give High Street a “distinct sense of place.” That’s like claiming that “The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift,” “Fast & Furious” and “Fast & Furious 6” have distinct senses of cinema.
These are just a few of the establishments that will make Ohio State’s campus Columbus’ next Tuttle Mall.
Campus Partners failed to consider students’ needs when planning High Street’s development, especially when they neglected to include a Lids where students could conveniently purchase Tap Out flatbills.
Campus Partners got the redevelopment ball rolling, and other private companies have joined in on the fun.
You might have noticed the under-construction, luxury apartment compound “Wilson Place” near Lane Avenue proudly touting its banner for $999 a month rent per person.
However, at least on apartments.com, the current online prices for two-bedroom apartments at Wilson Place — which is owned by Edwards Communities, not Campus Partners — start at $2,430, with an additional $125 garage parking pass. Cool.
These apartments are the perfect place for students to live after being bankrupt by Ohio State’s two-year dorm live-in requirement.
The O Patio & Pub will soon be demolished this summer for a fountain; a more wholesome environment for students to gather on weekends. So long, chants of “Let’s go to The O!”
Hello, shouts of “Let’s safely gather by the fountain!”
This new area built on the muffled shouts of fraternity revelry will be called “University Square,” a gathering space planned to be a “physical and visual link” between campus and the east side of High Street. Students should be grateful for a parking garage, a luxury apartment building and an 11-story hotel.
Construction is scheduled to finish in the early 2020s, so the next few waves of incoming freshmen will deal with perpetual construction until they graduate.
This isn’t the first time Campus Partners has created a “distinct sense of place” at Ohio State. Campus Partners signature development is the South Campus Gateway.
The construction of Gateway brought “225,000 square feet of retail, 188 apartments, 88,000 square feet of office space and a 1,200 space parking garage” to Ohio State’s students.
If you have ever been to Gateway, there’s a clear sense of campus culture with four phone stores and a Panera Bread. Everything a kid needs.
Campus Partners also has been a great friend to small businesses in the South Campus Gateway. A restaurant called Gooeyz rented a space where sewage “spilled on customers … nearly 10 times” from a bathroom in the space above.
The loving hands of Campus Partners then charged Gooeyz’s owners for being closed when they dealt with a faulty air conditioning unit, inherited from the property they leased from Campus Partners, until Gooeyz went out of business. Cool.
Campus Partners is modernizing High Street without regard for the small businesses that create campus culture, and that’s a shame for future students.