Chlois G. Ingram Spirit of Women Park Columbus, Ohio
Urban Park Design
2013 Ohio Chapter ASLA Merit Award
Park re-imagined to commemorate the true strength and spirit of women.
When The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center embarked on a major five year, $1.1 billion expansion, they were faced with a difficult decision—the Chlois G. Ingram Spirit of Women Park was part of the site, but with the expansion it would need to be relocated or removed.
The original park, named for its benefactor who was a dedicated American Red Cross volunteer at the Medical Center, included thousands of ceramic tiles, each featuring original donor artwork. Neither the University nor the MKSK/OLIN design team was interested in losing this one-of-a-kind asset.
Tasked with relocating the park to a former open space within the Medical Center campus, MKSK/OLIN anchored the new site by creating a dramatic, 175-foot-long Donor Fountain. The fountain's crescent-shaped reflecting pool features 1,515 glass tiles etched with artwork from the former park’s ceramic tiles. A team of artists individually photographed and digitally traced each tile to maintain the hand-made quality of the original art. The glass tiles are placed as if ‘floating’ in the reflecting pool.
The park design also employed sustainable features, as part of the Medical Center Expansion’s LEED Silver initiative, such as bio-retention cells to capture and purify rainwater from the surrounding streets and walkways. LED lighting was used in the fountain for low energy consumption. In addition, many of the existing trees were saved and stored during the construction process and then replanted as part of the new park.
The new Chlois G. Ingram Spirit of Women Park is designed to honor the lives of extraordinary women. The park space has been relocated and creatively re-imagined as a memorial park that honors the healing impact of women and Chlois’ legacy—“With a spirit of caring, compassion, and kindness, the nourishment she shared healed hearts and restored hope”—a quote prominently featured on the inscription on the park’s commemorative signage.
Now visitors can relax in areas surrounded by wildflowers which bloom throughout the seasons, dine at the handicapped-accessible tables, utilize the park’s Wi-Fi capabilities, or spend time reflecting in front of the Donor Fountain.