Pandemic effect: Community centres - architecture and design

Pandemic effect: Community centres

The Clayton Community Centre, a recent project by HCMA in Surrey, BC, is on track to be the first community centre to achieve Passive House in North America and Canada?s largest Passive House facility to date.
TEXT Darryl Condon, Managing Principal, and Melissa Higgs, Principal, HCMA
For many neighbourhoods, community centres are the single most important space for residents to gather, learn, play and celebrate together. Community centres also provide a key venue to support inclusion and diversity, providing an opportunity for us to break down systemic racism. 
One of the primary roles of our community centres?to bring us together?is directly at odds with the current need to maintain physical distance. While some things about our community spaces will change in reaction to the pandemic, our goal, as architects, should be to keep up their key mandate of fostering social unity. Some of the changes in community spaces will be temporary, while we anticipate that other changes may become permanent.
In the short term, while public safety guidelines are in seemingly constant flux, community centre operators are challenged to find different ways to engage with their communities. This has meant shifting more activities outdoors, limiting class sizes and implementing tight operational protocols.
The longer term is harder to predict, but we do anticipate some lasting, positive impacts on how we design community facilities. One of these changes is the design of the in-between spaces...
_MFUENTENOTICIAS canadian architect

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