Chicago, IL, United States
The design for the new SOS Children’s Villages Illinois and Maestro Cares Community Center exemplifies a unification of SOS’s child-fostering mission with the surrounding family “villages” of the Roosevelt Square community. The prominent corner site along the active Blue Island Avenue, just south and west of Chicago’s downtown area, will welcome engagement with adjacent residential neighborhoods while presenting a positive and compelling outward image to the public.
Slated to be the first new cross-laminated timber (CLT) structure built in Chicago, JGMA’s design is a physical manifestation of the forward-thinking nature of the SOS Children’s Villages organization. Inside the building, a dialogue is fostered between private programming: administrative and counseling offices; and more open, collective and communal programs: group study areas, a community event space and educational kitchen. JGMA located the community gathering and dining space and a roof terrace at the second floor, celebrating views to downtown Chicago to inspire children, families and all who pass through.
SOS Children’s Villages Illinois will be well served by public transportation (CTA 60 bus and Blue and Pink rapid transit line stations), automobile, bicycle and pedestrian access. Through these many modes of accessing the new location, the SOS Children’s Villages will participate in and augment the vibrancy of the existing neighborhood.
Processional approaches to the building through a public plaza and community gardens also contribute to a sense of arrival, while establishing a positive street presence, clear site circulation and community-oriented outdoor gathering. Ultimately, this new center facilitates and encourages community interaction, while providing for safe and comfortable facilities for children, families and staff.
AWARDS + RECOGNITION
Chicago Commerical Real Estate Awards
Community Impact Project of the Year, 2022
The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Award for Excellence in Community Design, 2022
ENR Best of Best Award, 2022
Architecture Masterprize Award, 2021
ENR Regional Best Project Awards, 2021
Illinois Real Estate Journal Awards, 2021