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Second Round of Design Grants 2020

Five Nonprofits will receive design grants through the Community Design Collaborative’s Core Grant Program!
A welcoming gateway and gathering space will be imagined for this Southwest Neighborhood

A Core Grant was awarded to Bartram’s Garden/Empowered CDC and Philadelphia Housing Authority, who will be working with our Design Grant Team to create a conceptual design for a neighborhood gateway and gathering space located at 56th and Elmwood Avenue.  Having developed out of a HUD Choice Neighborhoods Initiative planning grant effort, the goal is to create a welcoming gateway to the neighborhood that celebrates the southwest neighborhood’s history, culture, and residents, while also creating a community gathering space for public programming. In addition, The Collaborative will be partnering with Ultimate Bock Party through the Playful Learning Landscapes Action Network Initiative to incorporate concepts of playful learning into the design to increase learning opportunities for neighborhood children aged 0-8. 

CORA Services building will be re-conceptualized

CORA Services will receive conceptual design for the re-envisioning of their social service facility. Located in Northeast Philadelphia, CORA Services provides school-based academic support, counseling, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech and language services, psychological services, truancy services, and behavior assessment and case management to children. As CORA celebrates their 50th anniversary, the design grant will help the organization position themselves to provide another 50 years of innovative service to youth and families. 

NSC Center City Office to be optimized for playful learning and inclusiveness

A grant was awarded to Nationalities Service Center, headquartered in Center City. NSC provides comprehensive services to immigrants and refugees, including legal protections, community integration, access to health and wellness services, and opportunities to achieve English language proficiency. Our volunteer design team will provide conceptual design for the renovation of their space to incorporate playful learning, safety and security, trauma-informed design, and increased privacy, accessibility, and inclusiveness. 

John Coltrane House in Strawberry Mansion

Strawberry Mansion CDC will receive a grant for a feasibility study which will support their effort to preserve the John Coltrane House and create the John Coltrane Museum and Cultural Arts Center as an amenity for the neighborhood and a destination for the city. Their goal is to comprehensively house and exhibit the life and work of John Coltrane, as well as create a living legacy through the promotion and evolution of jazz music. The Collaborative’s services are intended to provide information with which SMCDC can confirm the feasibility of the development and make decisions about property acquisition.  

A new school yard will be envisioned for Ziegler Elementary

Zeigler Elementary School was awarded a grant for a conceptual design for the re-imagining of their schoolyard. Located in the Frankford area of Philadelphia, Ziegler is a public K-8 school whose goal is to better utilize their schoolyard and other outdoor space to address the needs of their diverse population and to promote cooperative learning and community outreach. The Collaborative will be partnering with Ultimate Bock Party through the Playful Learning Landscapes Action Network Initiative to incorporate concepts of playful learning into the open space design. 

About Design Grants

The Collaborative’s Core Grant Program provides preliminary design through which we match highly skilled volunteer teams of design professionals with community organizations to provide pro bono predevelopment design services that strengthen the capacity of nonprofits in the Philadelphia region.

Offering this service pro bono removes the barrier of cost for non-profits in need of predevelopment services. Our community-engaged design process – which brings together neighbors, local businesses, developers, city agencies, and other community stakeholders – not only results in high-quality design products, it also increases community buy-in and builds organizational capacity of our client groups.

See our recent work and find out how nonprofits can apply for a Design Grant.




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