SOS Children’s Villages Lavezzorio Community Center

Chicago
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Photo © Steve Hall © Hedrich Blessing, Courtesy of Studio Gang Architect
Architects
Studio Gang
Location
Chicago
Year
2008
Cost
100K - 1M
Stories
1-5 Stories

Thinking of change as a liberating architectural opportunity rather than a limitation led to the original design of the SOS Lavezzorio Community Center. As the central hub of SOS Children’s Village Chicago, an organization in Chicago’s Auburn-Gresham neighborhood that serves foster care families, the building combines services for foster care and neighborhood families under one roof.

With its limited budget, contributions and in-kind donations were necessary to complete the Center. The building’s main “strata-wall” (made of varying mixes of concrete cast into wavy horizontal layers) preserves and reveals the complex donation system that shaped the project. It also demonstrates the material properties of concrete by exposing its liquid nature.

Inside the building, multi-faceted, naturally lit public spaces encourage a range of learning opportunities and social interaction. An extra-wide bleacher stair in the lobby doubles as classroom seating and an impromptu stage for performance, while a large community room on the second floor serves as classroom, exercise room, and meeting space.

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