Project File: Swapping roles

A fire station in Carol Stream, Ill., was converted to a center for community education. The Carol Stream Regional Center of the College of DuPage is an 11,650-square-foot facility that provides classes for first-time students and meets the educational needs of local businesses and residents. The center includes two computer classrooms and one open computer lab, two classrooms for credit and non-credit courses, one multipurpose science lab and a community meeting space shared with the local library.

The space that formerly housed fire trucks is the heart of the building. It is a high-volume, transparent technology/community center, revealing a wood roof deck from the original facility. Classroom spaces incorporate principles of sustainability and are situated at the building's edge to maximize the use of natural daylight. Sunscreen devices and shading have been installed to limit solar gain and glare.

Structural-steel framing was used to reconfigure and reinforce the existing masonry and wood-timber, fire-station shell. Aluminum composite panel systems (ACPS) were used to clad two new sunscreen loggia structures to provide shading of interior spaces on the east and west facades. Sunscreens were incorporated along the south facade to shield the sun from the interior classrooms.

The architect for this project is OWP/P (Chicago).

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