The center was designed from a child’s perspective. Child development as a concept is recognized through the openness of the center. The kitchen is designed as a learning center, and a portion of the existing structure and systems above the ceiling level are left exposed. Common multipurpose space organizes the project, eliminating single-use hallways CITATIONBronze CitationFEATURED IN2003 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYChildcare Centers non-visible space.
The project has a freely flowing space concept, with one space leading into another. This was further supported by soffiting and the overlapping and continuity between spaces of lines, such as breaks in floor materials, extensions of lighting fixtures and connection casework.
Visibility and privacy were carefully considered. The openness of the major spaces was a response not only to the management style of the operator, but also to concerns for fire/life safety. There is discreet visibility of child toilet areas to immediate staff, while each area is well shielded from view from elsewhere. Active and passive areas are zoned carefully, with napping in the quietest and darkest areas of the center.
Exterior project work added new tile half-walls and aluminum grillwork to match the existing building design, while enclosing and securing the outdoor play area from the general public.
"Exciting, terrific variation of spaces. Very good mix of curves, colors and lighting. Nice touch with the child-sized entrance door!"—2003 jury