[ THE CHALLENGE ] Design a new community center to accommodate meetings, after school and social activities at a public housing development in Leominster. Virtually all labor is to be provided by students at the local vocational high school supplemented by work and materials donated by area businesses.
[ THE RESPONSE ] The shed-roofed volume opens up to the south for passive solar heating in winter. Sun screens and operable windows maximize summer cooling. The barn-like form is simple but dignified and reinforces the building’s public character. Smaller study spaces open up off the main space and provide for a range of different needs. An operable wall and built-in carrels are laser cut out of “green” particle board.