Hardlines Design Company Celebrates 30th Anniversary While Working Through COVID-19

Columbus Chamber
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Hardlines Design Company will celebrate its 30th anniversary on April 28. In the history of the company, it seems that recessions come every 10 years or so. When HDC was founded in 1990 during the 1990-1991 recession when architectural firms were not hiring recent architecture school graduates. HDC weathered the dot.com bust in 2000-2002 and then survived the Great Recession of 2008-2011. Right on schedule, HDC is now in the midst of an economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since an open house celebration is not possible, we are celebrating with the release of a 30th anniversary logo (above).

Fortunately, HDC’s employees have experience working from home and most of our project work (CAD drafting, writing specifications, preparing cost estimates) can be completed while working remotely. Company president Charissa Durst is the only person coming to the office on a regular basis in order to check the server backups, get mail, deposit checks, make payroll, and resolve any technical issues staff working from home may encounter. However, Charissa isn’t stuck in the office by herself — Ziti has also stayed on her same work schedule!

Ziti doesn’t have much to do except lounge around since there’s no one around to greet.

HDC Continues with QuieterHome® Project in Louisville, Kentucky

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has determined that certain homes around the Louisville International Airport may be eligible for sound insulation improvements to minimize aircraft noise inside the home. The Louisville Regional Airport Authority (LRAA), working with the FAA and C&S Engineers, has created the QuieterHome® Program to administer these improvements. HDC has been working with C&S Engineers on this project since 2007, and recently surveyed homes for historic and/or architectural significance located in Group 8 of the project area. The properties are mostly single-family, bungalow-style homes built in the 1920s and 1930s, of varying levels of historic integrity.

 
Left: A bungalow rendered almost unrecognizable by additions and alterations. Right: A brick bungalow with good integrity.

Columbus City Schools Commissions Hardlines for Restroom Improvement Project

In December 2019, Columbus City Schools commissioned HDC to prepare construction documents for restroom improvements in six schools: Cassady Elementary School, Hamilton STEM School, Mifflin High School, Mifflin Middle School, Salem Elementary School and Winterset Elementary School. Since construction can be completed only over the summer when school is not in session, the HDC team quickly surveyed and submitted documents for review in January and February. The project was bid in March with a construction contract to be awarded in May. Construction is scheduled to start in June and be completed in August before the students return to their classrooms. Bid numbers were good and all alternates will be awarded!

Drawing for one of the elementary school restroom improvements.

Construction on Devon Pool Mechanical Building to Start Soon

After the Devon Pool Bath House replacement was completed in May 2019, HDC began working with the City of Upper Arlington to design the replacement of the pool equipment buildings. The north building was constructed in the 1930s for the original pool, and the south building went up in the late 1960s when the city added the diving well. Both buildings are wood-frame structures sitting on concrete-foundation walls that also serve as retaining walls for the pool deck along Coventry Road. To meet budget and schedule constraints, HDC’s design includes retaining the existing foundations and removing only the wood-frame portions of the buildings and replacing them with masonry structures. The space between the buildings is being enclosed to create inside storage space. A new wing at the north end will house a new pool heater for the main pool. As part of this project, the city is also replacing some pool equipment that is near the end of its life cycle. The construction contract is anticipated to be approved in April, but construction will not start until mid-August when school begins and the pool season ends. The new mechanical building will be operational in time for the 2021 pool season, which will start on Memorial Day weekend.
Drawing of the west (pool side) elevation of the new Devon Pool equipment building.

Ziti Deals with Social Distancing by Going to the Park

The mandate for social distancing has canceled Ziti’s agility classes, and she hasn’t been able to run and wrestle with her usual doggie friends in the neighborhood. But, all that energy must go somewhere! Our solution has been to take her to the park no matter the weather and go to the more remote sections if the weather is nice. We’ve never seen so many people walking in these parks before! We are keeping our fingers crossed that all parks continue to remain open during the pandemic, or Ziti will really go stir crazy!

 
Left: Ziti at Tar Hollow State Park, one of the least visited parks in Ohio. Right: Ziti splashes through a flooded trail at a metro park.
When home, Ziti sure enjoys watching videos of herself!

Click here to watch the video shown on the TV above of Ziti chasing balls on empty tennis courts during a cold weekend.