The White Castle Masterplan is a transformative, mixed-use development in the heart of Columbus, Ohio. Situated just outside the downtown core, this 20-acre greyfield site was home to the White Castle Corporate Offices and Manufacturing Facility for over 80 years.
2nd Award- Global Future Design Awards 2020
Firm | Architectural Alliance Ltd DBA archall
Architect/Designer | Architectural Alliance Ltd DBA archall
Category | Urban Design Built
Team | Jonathan Grubb, Heather Roether, Bryan Galli, John Lytle, Kiernan Smith, Casey Messaro, Jessica Sprankle
Country | United States
Photographer/Copyright | ©Meg Verticchico
Although considered a contributing part to the downtown district, the site is isolated, with highways on two sides (east and south), railroads (south), and the Olentangy River to the west. From the onset, our intent was to create our own urban microcosm within the much larger downtown context, a district that draws people in and keeps them here with a ‘work, play, live’ mentality. Included in this masterplan is over 170,000 SF of Class-A office spaces, including White Castle’s new corporate headquarters, 260+ multi-family residential units, restaurant / retail spaces, a community / event center, indoor / outdoor amenity spaces including pool and fitness centers, all situated around a network of programmable landscaped parks. While the two dedicated ‘city-scale’ spaces provide a buffer between the corporate and residential uses of the development, each supports a variety of different programs and functions.
The park at the center of the plan functions as an amphitheater for concerts and community events. With buildings fronting all four sides, this park will feel like a true urban greenspace. The second park, which runs east-west, is intended to be a visual axis between the White Castle Corporate Office and the Olentangy River along the western boundary of the site. At the terminus of this park, there is a raised landscaped overlook, with a walking trail down to the river’s edge, supporting kayaking and other water activities. In addition to the internalized development strategy, there was also an emphasis placed on the site’s connection to downtown, albeit visually. Situated on a bluff, the entire development has an unobstructed view of the downtown skyline, so capitalizing on this view was also an underlying theme, thus the positioning and architecture / massing of the individual buildings work together to create strong view corridors and provide various rooftop terrace experiences.