County Commissioners' Association of Ohio - 88 CCAO - Serving Ohio Counties Since 1880

Ohio Courthouses Symposium






Held May 15-16, 2014 at the Columbus Athenaeum, Columbus, OH

County courthouses are prominent public buildings in our county seats. They serve as the center for political and commercial life and are important anchors in the heart of our Ohio communities. Sixty-nine of Ohio’s county courthouses are listed on the National Register of Historic Places and many of the other courthouses are just as significant.  But each public building comes with challenges to meet public needs.   What are the solutions and techniques making these buildings viable for another 100 years and how will they be funded?

CCAO, the Ohio History Connection (formerly the Ohio Historical Society), the Supreme Court of Ohio, Heritage Ohio, Columbus and Ohio Chapters of the American Institute of Architects, and others  hosted a special Ohio County Courthouses Symposium on May 15-16, 2014 to celebrate the economic and symbolic value of our historic courthouses and to learn how to overcome the challenges of funding and maintaining Ohio's courthouses in the 21st century.

Symposium Presentations 

Ohio's Courthouses:  Continuing the Legacy

Ohio's county courthouses were built to serve as centers of the community and as signposts for the future of our state. Today, many are being revitalized in ways that update them for the 21st century while maintaining the history and architecture that makes them so irreplaceable.  Visit Auglaize, Union and Van Wert counties and see how these communities are continuing the legacy of their courthouses.  This video was produced by the Ohio History Connection.

Reception Photos

Plenary Session 1

American Identity and Legacy:  Courthouses

Plenary Session 2
Funding Sources for Courthouse Rehabilitation Projects
County Courthouse Restoration Grant Program
Ohio Rural Development Program
Hancock County Courthouse Restoration

Plenary Session 3

The Economic Benefit of the Courthouse Renovation
Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program
Ohio Development Services Presentation                     

Track 1 - Design Topics Associated with Courthouse Projects

Courthouse Planning and Needs Assessment:  How much courthouse do we need?
Preserving the Courthouse's Building Characteristics:  Roofs, masonry, windows and more
Design Opportunities for Historic Courthouses:  How can an old courthouse meet current standards?

Track 2 - Addressing Today's Technology Needs in Historic Courthouses

Internal Systems for Historic Buildings:  How to integrate heating, air conditioning and technology successfully
Security and Life Safety:  Meeting security requirements and creating a safe building
Making the Historic Courthouse Energy Efficient and Sustainable

Track 3 - Administering a Successful Courthouse Project

How to Master the Planning Process:  What do we do first?
Franklin County
Wood County
Building Community Support:  How to create positive public relations during the renovation and beyond
Auglaize County
Butler County
Ongoing Maintenance:  How to preserve the investment