Vanessa Behan provides immediate refuge for children and support to strengthen families. The charge of this new building is to embody these ideals and to create a space that can simultaneously meet the complex privacy requirements of the nursery while being accessible and welcoming to the public for outreach.
The kid-centric nature of this building necessitated a level of playfulness be expressed through the structure’s form and materiality. It is important for the building to be recognized by the public as a safe place, and instill visiting kids with a sense of adventure. The building is meant to be something that is completely different from what these kids experience in their typical environments. It brings little ones into an exciting new world protected from outside stress, where they are free to make their own positive childhood memories. The 32,000 square-foot nursery has a full kitchen, space for children to play and sleep, and drop-in rooms for community health partners to offer services to family members.