Holly Park Community Center – Commerce City, Colorado
The Holly Park Community Center is a community facility and offices for an affordable housing complex in Commerce City, Colorado. It is owned by Mercy Housing Colorado and being looked at as a model for new community centers at other properties.
Holly Park was originally constructed as market rate apartments in the 1970’s. When Mercy took it over it faced problems typical of this type of conversion, a lack of facilities needed for affordable housing. Mercy offers programs to their residents including job training and after school care and these needs had to be handled in a converted apartment. In addition the offices were undersized to handle the increased tenant interaction with staff and the need for clothing and food banks. Finally the on site maintenance was being housed in a variety of sheds.
In order to address these problems, Mercy wanted to raise funds for a community building with new offices and storage spaces. The only way to fund it was private donations and we kicked that off by donating the design of a floor plan and elevation for fund raising purposes. In the end they were able to raise enough money to pay for the project in cash.
One of the biggest challenges was the limited space on the site. With each side of the complex being separately funded their is an internal property line along with the roads and utility lines. The building footprint maxes out the buildable area.
Now that the building is complete it houses their offices, large food and clothing banks, a room that accommodates community functions and after school care, a computer lab and an office for a police liaison officer.