Firms to present designs for Airpark

Virtual presentations are planned for community residents to offer input on firms being considered for a possible landscaping project on the Columbus Airpark campus.

Four firms will give presentations on Tuesday and Wednesday to Airpark campus partners and the public about a potential master plan and landscape design project, said Community Education Coalition Executive Director Kathy Oren.

In March, the Cummins Foundation announced its possible support for the tentative project. The foundation’s architecture program recommended four firms for consideration: Reed Hilderbrand of Cambridge, Massachusetts; Gustafson Guthrie Nichol (GGN) of Seattle, Washington; Merritt Chase of Indianapolis; and Studio Zewde of Harlem, New York.

"We are super excited about this project, and incredibly grateful to Cummins for providing this opportunity," Oren said.

The firms’ presentations are open to the public, and registration is required in order to receive a Zoom link. The registration form can be accessed at

The deadline to register is noon on Monday, and the link will be sent out later that day.

The presentations are scheduled as follows: 

Tuesday, April 27, 10:30 a.m. to 12:40 p.m. — Reed Hilderbrand at 10:30 a.m., Studio Zewde at 11:40 a.m. 

Wednesday, April 28, 1 to 3:10 p.m. — Merritt Chase at 1 p.m., GGN at 2:10 p.m.

Oren said that each firm will have 30 minutes for their presentation and 20 minutes will be given for Q&A. Time has also been allotted for giving background information, as well as breaks between presentations. 

"All participants will be allowed to submit questions via the chat during the Zoom event," she said. "We will have some questions submitted in advance from campus partners and hope to have time to respond to questions in the chat as well."

She added that participants will also be able to provide additional feedback via an online evaluation form after the presentations.

Oren said that project partners plan to finalize ther selection of a firm during the week of May 3.

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”If you go” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

What: Firm presentations for the AirPark Columbus College Campus Master Plan and Landscape Design project

When: Tuesday, April 27, 10:30 a.m. -12:40 p.m. — Reed Hilderbrand at 10:30 a.m., Studio Zewde at 11:40 a.m.

Wednesday, April 28, 1-3:10 p.m. — Merritt Chase at 1 p.m., GGN at 2:10 p.m.

How to register: Fill out the form at The deadline to register is noon on Monday, April 26. Participants will receive a Zoom link via email later that day. 

[sc:pullout-text-end][sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”About the potential project” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

The project’s RFP outlines the scope of work in two parts: the campus master plan and the landscape design.

The campus master plan phase involves planning and landscape design for the airpark campus as a whole.

The landscape design phase involves three specific areas of campus — the southwest corner, the main campus quad and the northeast corner. The southwest corner is to be the initial priority, in the hopes that implementation might coincide with the opening of the new Ivy Tech building.

The landscape design project was partially spurred by the construction of that building, which will replace Poling Hall and is set to open in the summer of 2022.

“With the demolition of Poling Hall, the entire southwest corner of campus will be reimagined, and a new view of campus and the quad will come to life,” coalition officials said.

Coalition officials stated that goals for the landscape design project include creating a unifying campus identity, improving physical connections between buildings, increasing campus equity and boosting desirability for students. 

Partners on the airpark campus master plan and landscape design project include (but are not limited to) Ivy Tech Columbus, IUPUC, Purdue Polytechnic Columbus, the City of Columbus, Columbus Municipal Airport and the Community Education Coalition.

There is also a project guiding team, a campus coordinating and selection input team, and a large community stakeholder advisory group.

In March, the CEC announced a "potential collaboration" with the Cummins Foundation on the landscape design project.