Making a Big Impact by Making a Smaller Impact
In February 2020, SOS Children’s Villages Illinois made the first steps toward building a greener future for the children and families it serves, as well as the surrounding community, as the structure of the Roosevelt Square Community Center at 13th Street and Blue Island Avenue began to take shape. The last few weeks’ activities focused on making a big impact by installing our first eco-friendly architectural features that will help SOS Illinois in the future make a much smaller impact on the earth’s environment with the use of sustainable materials and energy-efficient appliances and lighting.
Construction work this month included the final stages of cutting and capping existing water lines along Blue Island Avenue. Once completed, all underground work on the building was done. This coincided with the delivery of the Glulam columns, beams, and hardware, as well as the arrival of the crane to support the assembly of the structure.
As mentioned last month, the initial stages of the drilling and applying of epoxy on the anchor bolts took place, which then made for simpler installation of the Glulam columns. The base structure of the building, the columns, was raised within a 24 hour period. Additionally, following the delivery of the Glulam beams, the installation process moved along at a rapid pace, despite the true first snowfall of the winter.
The month’s activities also included the delivery and installation of the roofing panels. SOS Illinois had this portion of the construction captured by a local television show, Built to Last, which was secured by one of our board members. We look forward to sharing this story when it airs on ABC 7 Chicago. Another exciting bit of news is that a time-lapse camera was installed and will be capturing footage of the construction. We hope to share images from this camera as construction progresses.
Sustainable Architecture: The Eco-Friendly Features of the Community Center
As shared in previous blogs, most notable for Chicago is the center will be the first public building in the city permitted to be fully constructed from Cross Laminated Timbers (CLT). The eco-friendly features of the new center complement the nonprofits Village Model of Care, a sustainable model of foster care that stabilizes families, strengthens communities, and builds lasting change for future generations.
The architectural planning, inspired by generous donations, will include the use of eco-friendly materials, like CLT and Glulam columns and beams, as well as sustainable and renewable energy sources, such as solar panels, and energy-efficient appliances and light fixtures. The site location and inclusion of an urban garden, both further promote the organization’s commitment to responsible development.
The leadership of our friends at Lendlease has done an amazing job of capitalizing on the good weather this winter; thus, we are right on schedule with the construction project. As the vision of the Roosevelt Square Community Center continues taking shape, those watching are eagerly anticipating the services it will provide to our families and the surrounding community. Below is a timetable of the center construction:
Construction Began – October 2019
Foundation Complete – December 2019
Structure Started – February 2020
Structure Complete – Anticipated Early March 2020
Structure Enclosed – Anticipated Late April 2020
Occupancy of Center – Anticipated Late September 2020
The Roosevelt Square Community Center
This center, an 11,000 square foot space, will serve the children and families at our Roosevelt Square Village and surrounding communities. Programs will include academic, therapeutic, social, and recreational support; multi-use spaces for community members to connect to public resources and engage in training, activities, and events; as well as a signature culinary kitchen providing food and nutrition education, and jobs-skills training for the hospitality industry. In addition to the over one hundred children and families cared for by SOS Illinois, more than 5,000 people from the surrounding neighborhoods will be served by the center.
Throughout the course of the construction project, visit the SOS Illinois blog to see videos, pictures, and updates on the progress of the building. We look forward to sharing each milestone reached in the development of this important community resource. Missed a moment? Click here to view previous updates from September, October, November, December, and January.
Ways to Support the Community Center Project
Through the generous commitment of time, resources, and financial support of many, SOS Illinois is determined to raise the necessary investments to build the Community Center and provide a beacon for the Village residents and surrounding neighborhoods. For ways to invest or learn more about the Community Center, visit here.