Little Village Family Resource Center

Location: Chicago, Illinois
Program: Childcare and Family Resource Center
Status: Complete, 2001
Photography: © Hedrich Blessing, Steve Hall
Selected Recognition: 2001 Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Architectural Excellence in Community Design. 2001 Merit Award Finalist, Chicago Building Congress. 2000 Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Award, Architectural Excellence in Community Design.

The Little Village Family Resource Center is a two story, 22,000 square foot addition to an existing 15,000 square foot Child Care and Family Resource Center.  The expanded facility provides early childhood care for 270 children ages infant through 12.   The new facility addition allows the Center to further strengthen the community by improving the quality and range of family support services, including child care, after-school programs, parenting education, job training and counseling. The small existing site across the street from Douglas Park, posed physical limitations for expansion.  Placing the new structure away from the existing building created an outdoor courtyard that functions as a protected play space for infants.  Semi-circular forms from the Conference and Gross Motor Rooms with floating ceiling planes serve to identify the entry to the building.  The outdoor courtyard between the Entry and Gross Motor Rooms creates long views through the Center, adding to the community feel.  Patterned masonry and colorful awnings create a playful tie to the existing building. Classrooms are light filled and wide open to provide flexibility in accommodating new teaching and learning trends.  Surge space located at each classroom door provides an extra area to park strollers and queue children as they venture outside of their classroom environment.