On Saturday, the Chicago Center for Arts & Technology (ChiCAT) hosted a design charrette for their state-of-the-art school and community center in the near west side of Chicago. The rehabilitated 4-story building is equipped with a performance space, art gallery, computer lab, and other facilities that cater to the arts. ChiCAT will provide after-school programs to 80 youths and occupational training for 40 adults in the first two years and will expand their programs in the years to follow.
The charrette began with a brief introduction, an overview of the project building, and a presentation of the facility space plan before separating into small groups to brainstorm. Instructions were given to the groups focusing the brainstorm on the five topics: welcoming environment, security, interior aesthetics, exterior aesthetics, and community space uses: events & programming. After the groups thoroughly discussed the topics, the charrette regrouped to share their ideas and the next steps. ChiCAT plans to use the insight gained from the small groups to make their programs more beneficial to members of the surrounding community