Frank Packard and Packard & Yost Architects
Frank L. Packard
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Sources: Columbus Public Library; Henderson, Andrew, Images of America:
Forgotten Columbus, Arcadia Publishing, 2002.
Frank Lucius Packard was born in Delaware, Ohio in 1866. He came to Columbus
in 1892, co-founding the firm of Yost (J. W. Yost) and Packard, and became
sole owner of the firm in 1899. He was president of the Columbus Chamber
of Commerce from 1919-1920, a member of the city planning commission and
was working on the Columbus Civic Center plan at his death. Packard also
drafted one of the first master plans for the Ohio State University campus,
which became somewhat controversial, included the concept of the Oval
Packard was chosen by President Harding as his representative in the
purchase of the site, the designing and construction of the U.S. embassy
building at Rio de Janeiro and at the time of his death was a member
of the Committee on Public Buildings of the American Institute of Architects.
In 1895 he became a Fellow of the Institute. He was also a trustee of
the Ohio Archaeological and Historical Society.
Packard was America's foremost institutional architect, designing over
3400 buildings, including over 100 business and residential buildings
in Columbus alone. Buildings designed by Packard in the Columbus area
include: the Chittenden, Virginia and Seneca Hotels, Memorial Hall which
formerly housed the Center of Science and Industry, the Governor's Mansion,
the Columbus Country Club, and residences in Grandview Heights and Marble
Cliff and elsewhere. His style very often included arched windows and
entryways, and tall windows and columns. Other buildings which
he designed are the Girls' Industrial School, Delaware, Ohio; the Ohio
Building at the St. Louis Exposition; Capitol Annex, Charleston, West
Virginia; Columbus Savings and Trust Company, Huntington National Bank,
Elks' Club, Columbus Club, Aladdin Country
Clubs, all in Columbus. He was also the architect of a group of buildings
on the campus of Ohio State University.
Excerpt from the historical section of the OSU Master Plan document from
the Office of OSU Facilities Planning and Development:
In any case the concept-if not the name-of the [OSU]
Oval was clear in Frank Packard's 1904 Plan which was Ohio State's
first serious challenge to Olmsted's natural, picturesque theory of
campus planning. Packard's concept of a formal axis linking a new
"University Hall" to the main campus entrance at Fifteenth
Avenue lasted until the 1990's when the Wexner Center was built, and
his definition of a large, open, oval-shaped, central space, still
remains as the most carefully protected component of the campus.
The location of Lord Hall at an angle of approximately 45 degrees
to the rest of the campus is the only remnant of Packard's recommendation
for a major northwest-southeast axis connecting the Armory (which
he designed) to new athletic fields near the intersection of Lane
and Woodruff Avenues [see right center of photo below]. By 1907 this
axis had been blocked by the location of the Mechanical and Electrical
Laboratory (Robinson Laboratory). This early "shelving" of
the Packard Plan may be partially explained by an observation of
the time that "the
Packard plans were never followed because of their inaccuracy and
disregard for locating prospective buildings … his proposed
location for Lord Hall was shifted southwest to avoid encroachment
on the woods."
Chapter 2, http://www.fpd.ohio-state.edu/assets/Master_Planning/columbus/menu/
Source Photo 1: Columbus 400 OH920.977157 C7261, p. 37.
Photo 2: Club Men of Columbus in Caricature OH920.0772 I65c, p. 242.
CCVC 095/P119, 095/P119/1911 Date 1896
Began his career as an architectural apprentice for the Delaware
County surveyor in 1881 and graduated from MIT 6/1887. His civic center
plan was printed 6/27/1925.
Columbus address: 1739 S. Franklin Park