The imaginative architecture of many Columbus buildings has humble beginnings that can be traced back to a teenager’s notebook scribblings. David Rectenwald, a Columbus architect who works for Urban Design, is one of those people whose career chose him at a very young age.
“I was always interested in drawing and taking art classes,” Rectenwald says. “It wasn’t until later that I realized I really enjoyed the challenge of the technical side of architecture, as well.”
Originally from Cleveland, Rectenwald came to Columbus to go to OSU, and later returned back to make it his home. Rectenwald’s been keeping busy at Urban Design by fixing up interiors of older buildings for a large real estate company, while also designing developments at places like Buckeye Lake, where the final product is influenced by the natural beauty of the area.
“We try to cater what we do to the project and to the client,” Rectenwald says. “Every project is different and needs a design that will work the best under the circumstances.”
From Compass Pointe, the Buckeye Lake development, to some of his more current projects, like the interior renovation of the historic Worly Building in the Brewery District, Urban Design takes an approach that is unorthodox for an architect, but makes it work. In a perfect world, they would only deal with the creative aspect of architecture, but the business side of the industry requires the majority of their attention—and the ever-expanding Columbus area keeps them very busy.
Rectenwald sees a lot of potential in downtown Columbus and feels that a resurgence is only in its beginning stages.
“There is a lot of energy and youth in Columbus,” Rectenwald says. “There’s a lot of projects going on downtown that are going to pump more life into the area.”
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