Withrow University High School named Ohio's most beautiful by Architectural Digest

CINCINNATI -- Take a drive down Madison Road in Hyde Park and you can't help but stop and stare at Withrow University High School's monumental facade.

National architects are taking notice, too, as the nearly century-old public school is Ohio's representative in Architectural Digest's recent list of America's most beautiful high schools.

The magazine notes architect Frederick W. Garber's arching bridge leading to Madison Road and the 114-foot-tall clock tower that serves as the campus' centerpiece.

The site was originally part of the estate of Andrew Erkenbrecher, who founded the Cincinnati Zoo, according to the school's website. It opened in September 1919 with 1,300 students and 65 teachers, even though the building was not fully completed.

"While the campus and its buildings are impressive, it is the clock tower that symbolizes Withrow," the school's website reads. "Inside the tower are 110 steps leading to windows above the clock, where, on a clear day, one can see for miles."

The bridge mentioned by Architectural Digest was condemned as unsafe in 1980, but the Friends of Withrow raised $150,000 to restore the structure within two years' time, according to the school's website.

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