Books, colors and architecture, by MKCA
With help from the local community, Michael K. Chen Architecture MKCA designs new Children’s Library for a Bronx homeless shelter
MKCA was in charge of the design of the new children’s library for families transitioning out of homelessness.
Established in 1991, Concourse House is a Bronx-based shelter that serves women with young children, and works to eliminate homelessness by providing families with safe, stable, transitional housing, coupled with a range of social services and programming to help them make successful transitions into permanent housing.
“The love of books and of reading is something that defined my own childhood, and that of everyone on our team,” said MKCA principal Michael Chen. “The space for imagination and for reflection that books afford is such a gift, especially for kids who don’t currently have a permanent home, or might not have a space of their own. It’s a privilege to work with Concourse House to make the library a reality for such a deserving group of children.”
The library is an important new component of the educational resources for the children at Concourse House, and is unique among the other program spaces as a place that is specifically dedicated to books and reading, and a much needed space for volunteer and staff led readings, story times, and other events organized around books. The importance of reading for the cognitive development and emotional health of children is widely recognized, and the library is designed to provide space and opportunity for exploration and imagination for children who more often than not, do not have access to their own books.
Photos by Alan Tansey. More info here.