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City of Emeryville & Emery Unified School District


Creating a community heartbeat: a first-of-its kind center that incorporates a K-12 school, health and social services, and arts and recreation into an enduring community hub

The first joint-use facility in the nation, the Emeryville Center of Community Life (ECCL) pioneered state legislation to authorize multiuse of school buildings. The 115,000-SF center consolidated facilities from six sites to reduce inefficiencies, improve educational performance, and deliver comprehensive services to citizens of all ages. MKThink undertook in-depth stakeholder engagement and conducted 20+ participatory workshops to ensure a design that responds to the diverse needs of the community. Scenario modeling established a strong case for the financial and community benefit and won the necessary approvals from the school board and city officials. 


DATES: 2013-2016
CITY: Emeryville
STATE: California
SIZE/SCALE: 115,000 SF
CHALLENGE: Create a better, faster, green and less expensive alternative to quick low performance modular trailers.


CHALLENGE: To create a multi-use school building that responded to the diverse needs of the community.
SERVICES: Redistricting Development, Feasibility Assessment, Conceptual Design, Design Development, Schematic Design, Master Planning, Stakeholder Engagement, Programming, Entitlements, and DSA Review.
RESULT: A school and city partnership that serves as a municipal model for cities across the nation.
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