Located in the heart of the City, the Coachella Community Center swaps the traditional civic center design in favor of a dynamic, multi-functional building, meeting the growing community's needs and bolstering existing assets.
In 2019, most of the City of Coachella governmental operations moved into a new building, which presented an opportunity to reimagine the historic City Hall as a new kind of civic hub designed by and for the Eastern Coachella Valley (ECV) community.
With funding from the City of Coachella, we partnered with Relativity Architects to complete a Feasibility Study for the new community hub.
Building on previous work in the City, we grounded our project in a robust community engagement strategy to ensure the design would reflect the needs of the residents. However, soon after the project began, COVID-19 challenged us to reimagine our engagement methods. We coupled online engagements, like surveys, with outdoor, socially distanced design workshops. In total, we engaged 447 community members, including three local artists, 21 local business owners, 11 local non-profits, and a focus group of 20 young people who prioritized youth services, health and wellness, and art classes, among others needs. In addition to the engagements, we conducted a market study to investigate how the CCC could invest in the area’s economic well-being.
Our final concept designs incorporate amenities prioritized by the community and supported by the market study. Spaces throughout the hub are versatile and can adapt to changing community priorities. Inside, Relativity Architects proposed a community kitchen, wellness center, and art space alongside the nonprofit hub, child care center, and coworking spaces, which support economic growth. In the surrounding greenspace, KDI designed the meditative garden, event plaza, and play spaces as a natural continuation of the indoor amenities.
In late 2021, we presented our Feasibility Study to the Coachella City Council. The Study demonstrates the need, market, and potential design of the Coachella Community Center and lays out next steps to translate the design into a built project. If built, the project has the potential to create a profound impact on the Eastern Coachella Valley’s economic growth, community health, and youth development.