Commercial Design - Big Box Re-Use
13,000 sf - Buckhannon, WV
Project: Repurpose an old Wal-Mart big box store into a community center to become a gathering place for all ages in the community. Interviews with community stakeholders identified key activity areas: gymnasium, pool, locker rooms, non-profit offices, meeting space, and a coffee shop. The design theme for the center will be mining and natural resources to honor the heritage of the region. The first phase of the project will encompass 13,000 square feet in the northeast corner of the existing building.
Design Concept: The concept for the community center is "exploration", which was derived from a combination of inspirations, from mining shafts to hiking to intellectual opportunities. One goal of the design is to invite visitors to explore the center.
Design Parti: Sketches and quick models were explored to arrive at a final criss-cross shape for the parti.
Adjacency Studies: Adjacencies were explored to determine the best arrangement for the exercise, office, meeting and lounging spaces with respect to traffic flow.
Layout Diagrams: Scaled bubble and block diagram sketches explored area placements within the building envelope.
Schematic Designs: The final plans met the client's requirements by integrating the concept of exploration with the wayfinding and layout of the community center. The space is divided by two corridors that beckon the guest to explore. Rails embedded in the flooring guide users down the corridors. Changing ceiling heights draw the visitor down the corridors and into the coffee lounge area.
The community center welcomes the visitor with a 16-foot tall, daylit entry that contains reception and waiting areas. The finishes are natural materials, such as wood and slate tile, with a complementary color palette of greens and yellows. Details indicate the mining theme, from the cart silhouette in the floor, to the lantern sconces, to the pick axe door handles.
Elevations: Elevations of the entry feature the ceiling changes and natural finishes.
Perspective: A perspective rendering of the entry area looking from within the center highlights the aesthetic of the skylight, the mining details embdedded in the floor, and the built-in seating.
Detail Drawing: A detail drawing of the entry doors illustrates how the handles and finishes integrate with the design.
Furniture, Fixtures and Finishes: The furniture, fixtures and finishes used in the entry area follow the decorative mining style while using natural and sustainable materials.
The coffee shop beckons the visitor upon entry to the community center. The lowered ceiling indicates a cozy place for relaxation and passing time. Furniture and fixtures continue the use of natural woods and metals and introduce blue to the green/gold palette. The back wall, visible from the entry, features local artwork.
Elevations: Elevations of the coffee shop highlight the thematic lighting and finishes and show ceiling details.
Perspective:A perspective rendering of the coffee shop as seen upon entering the community center shows the natural elements of the finishes while the angled hallways beckon the visitor to explore.
Detail Drawing: A detail drawing of the seating bench illustrates the finishes of the custom built-in.
Furniture, Fixtures and Finishes: The furniture, fixtures and finishes used throughout the coffee shop incorporate contemporary products while using sustainable materials.
Women's Locker Room
The womenís locker room offers a feminine twist on the natural palette, incorporating bright, flowery carpet amidst the wood trim and slate tile. The back wall in the wet area is covered in a mix of vibrantly colored recycled glass tiles. The grooming area features a custom regional blown-glass framed mirror for additional interest. The benches are designed to look like small mining carts to bring in the centerís theme.
Elevations: Elevations of the locker room feature the natural materials and finishes and show ceiling details.
Perspective: A perspective rendering of the locker room shows the custom finishes in the grooming area as well as the dressing and wet areas.
Detail Drawing: A detail drawing of the custom locker room bench illustrates the theme through a mining cart design.
Furniture, Fixtures and Finishes: The furniture, fixtures and finishes used in the locker room follow the decorative mining style while using natural and sustainable materials including slate tile flooring, high-efficiency light fixtures, and finishes with recycled content such as glass tiles.
Project completed for graduate thesis course in 2010.