Located directly in front of the Rural Studio designed, HERO playground, this project sought to create a safe and comfortable learning environment for children with difficult domestic circumstances. The building consists of three distinct components. The first is a classroom that is meant to be public and inviting. The second is the interview space which was intended to be not only peaceful but also hospitable. The dogtrot, a covered breezeway, is the third component. It links the two single story buildings together and allows for direct access to the playground. The exaggerated scale of the dogtrot’s height coupled with the low nature of the interview and classroom spaces articulates the entrance to the HERO Children’s Center and playground facility as a whole.
Materials for this project were resourcefully found and installed to be playful and charming. With a warm color palette, tilted windows, and a trellis that lightly shades the walkway up to the dogtrot, the center is highly approachable for visitors of all ages and circumstances. With the donation of this infrastructure, HERO was able to spend money that would otherwise have gone to construction and materials on programs to actually give the necessary support for many families in the community.