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Legacy House Columbus

Project Description

In 2017, an Ohio Human Services report identified more than 10,000 residents in Franklin County received homeless services that year, nearly 3,000 of whom were children. The Ohio Housing Finance Agency reports that for every 100 low-income renter households in Ohio, there are only 42 affordable rental units available. To respond to the housing crisis within its own neighborhood, Moody Nolan partnered with the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, Southeast Healthcare and 50 other local organizations to deliver a new prototype for affordable housing.

Located in Linden, a neighborhood historically marked by poverty and crime, Legacy House Columbus stands in contrast as an investment in the long-term vitality of the community. The site, donated by the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, was selected for its accessibility and walkability to grocery stores and public to transit.

The design process prioritized community engagement and inclusivity of residents, fostering a sense of unity and shared ownership in the project. To fund the project, the design team created partnerships with more than 50 organizations who donated time or materials to the project, making it a true community-wide effort.


Located on a tight site, the 750 square foot home is organized to maximize space and energy efficiency, with materials selected for maximum life cycle use. The house utilizes climate-treated materials designed to withstand inclement weather, requiring little-to-no maintenance. In a neighborhood where most residents do not have the financial means to keep up with home repairs, this design strategy was crucial to ensure the longevity of the home. Utilizing materials that will not quickly deteriorate or need repair will preserve the integrity of the home and neighborhood for decades.

Project Stats


Columbus, OH


750 sq. ft.

Year of Completion


Project Gallery

Design Features

The footprint of the home is configured to fit three bedrooms, a difficult achievement for a compact home. The bedroom count and overall design appeals to a mass market— from single professionals to young families and retirees alike. The double-height ceiling and glass front in the living space gives the room an open and transparent feel in a small floor plate. The design is architecturally modern yet restrained, demonstrating that good design can be economical without extravagance.

Legacy House Columbus is an investment in the revitalization of Linden, demonstrating how one small act of service can have a ripple effect on an entire neighborhood.