Beechview Community Center
Located at Broadway and Belasco Avenues in Beechview, this new mixed-use building reconnects the urban fabric and ties together an existing cluster of public uses. The project transforms a steep section of the Belasco Avenue right-of-way into a new building with a series of public open spaces and a reconfigured public staircase. Today this section of Belasco is a dilapidated staircase connecting the light rail stop, school, church and library, with residential sections of the neighborhood below. The new building weaves both residential and community programs around an enhanced stair connection to complement and celebrate the existing public facilities and transform this key link in the neighborhood.
Uses for the building were selected based on a survey of existing uses and activities along Broadway Avenue and their users. As part of the design process local residents were interviewed to gage what they wanted and thought was missing in their neighborhood. Based on this investigation the building was designed to include a restaurant, gym and yoga studio, residences, and theater. In addition a residential component will ensure a constant stream of people, make the project more economically feasible, and fill a gap in the current available housing market for studios and 1-bedroom units.
The project also improves the surrounding streetscape on Broadway Avenue and enhances existing trails and park spaces on the hillside below. Ultimately the project seeks to transform the Belasco corridor into a vessel of integrated collective life by connecting and collecting people and activities on a small but catalytic site in the neighborhood.
I worked on this project with my friend and colleague, Adriel Deller.