Pomerene Hall wins AIA Ohio Design Award

Pomerene Hall, the recently-renovated  campus landmark and home to TDAI, was recognized by the American Institute of Architects last month, being given the Merit Award for Newly Completed Project. Competing in category one, comprising Newly Completed Buildings, Additions, Remodelings, Renovations, and Restorations, Pomerene Hall was selected as one of only a handful of winners out of hundreds of applications.

Pomerene Hall was constructed in 1922 as the first Women’s Union and Recreation building at The Ohio State University. Known for it’s gothic style, the campus building lost much of its functionality due to the construction of  newer, unisex spaces such as the modern Ohio Union. The three-year renovation project which began in 2017 restored Pomerene Hall to its original, picturesque spirit. It is now the home of the Data Analytics Major, Department of History of Art, TDAI, five classrooms and the Mirror Lake Eatery.

“Recognition of Pomerene Hall’s OSU heritage and picturesque exterior forms was a key element of a successful design. ” said head architect Pete Confar from Acock Associates Architects . “By reuse of Pomerene’s beautiful materials and spaces, they aided in creating spaces that cannot be replicated in today’s new construction.”

“The renovation has transformed what was an underused building into a thriving, vibrant part of the campus community again.  It’s been an honor and a pleasure to not only have a hand in renovating Pomerene Hall, but also working in a building that seamlessly blends history with modern accommodations.” said Jenna McGuire, associate director of TDAI. “It saves an important part of our university’s history.  Being recognized for both the Merit Award from AIA and a finalist for the James B. Recchie Award shows that others see the beauty and value of this historical building as well.”

The renovation included modernizing both the physical facilities and the menu of a campus dining location.  Formerly the Mirror Lake Creamery, the new restaurant menu was driven by feedback directly from students.  Visitors can enjoy chicken fingers, fries, and milkshakes in a space featuring original wood paneling, curved plaster ceilings, and stained glass.

“Students love dining in the newly renovated building. It offers a unique ambience for students to relax and enjoy their meal overlooking the newly renovated Mirror Lake District.” said John Faul, Operations Manager for the Mirror Lake Eatery.


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