Located in one of the DC’s oldest African-American neighborhoods, the Deanwood Community Center and Library is a joint-use facility that features educational, recreational, and athletic programs for all ages. The variety of programming —early care and education center, recreation pool, sound recording studio, and public library—serves both the local community and patrons from across the city.
Sited at the north end of an existing 5.8-acre park in Northeast DC, the new community center anchors and integrates with the park. This location ensures that the park continues to offer a flexible configuration of playing fields for both the school and the community center. Additionally, the new building respects and enhances the park’s existing landscape.
The sustainable design strategies for the LEED-certified Silver facility focus on water conservation, materials, and energy reduction. This includes a 7,000 sf bio-retention garden and a below-grade sand filtration tank to naturally clean and retain stormwater on the site before it drains off into the city sewer system and the Anacostia River. Recycled content and renewable resources in the materials are incorporated both inside and outside the facility, and indoor air quality is promoted by using no- or low-VOC emitting materials throughout. Overall, the Center has been designed to reduce energy use by 40%, and relies on the extensive amounts of natural light brought into the building through skylights and clerestories.
One of the most significant strategies contributing to giving the Center a more sustainable footprint is strategic co-location. Located directly across the street from a Metro stop as well as a public school, residents can walk, take the Metro or bus, or drive to access “one-stop shopping” for public health, educational, and recreational services. Designated parking for low-emitting vehicles, extensive bike parking, and the project’s adjacency to the Metrorail system and multiple bus lines further contribute to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.