AIA Citation Award: Green River Community Center

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Sep. 19, 2011 12:00 am  

MARLON BLACKWELL ARCHITECTGreen River Community Center • Green River, Utah

PROJECT: Green River Community Center
FIRM: Marlon Blackwell Architect
LOCATION: Green River, Utah

The Green River Community Center addresses the social and economic needs for an impoverished community of 900 people and serves a large rural area as well. As a catalyst to revitalize the city, it is both the community’s gathering place and a welcome center for numerous tourists, who visit the nearby Arches National Park.

Inspiration for the project is drawn from the monumental form and rich materials of the location’s natural environment. A large cantilevered canopy embraces visitors to the center and serves as a visor to the intense western sun.

The ground floor is wrapped in glass on three sides to foster transparency, connectivity and security, featuring a large multi-purpose room as well as a lounge, library and classrooms. Along with the glass wrapper, a central courtyard delivers daylight to the interior and serves as a secure playground for federal Head Start programs.

The second floor houses administrative offices, while allowing access to a green roof that is available to the public featuring an event space and garden with views to the surrounding mountains.

The Green River Community Center will be LEED Platinum and feature many active and passive strategies for energy and resource conservation. A solar array on the roof harvests electricity, and the roof collects all rainwater for storage in a cistern below the central courtyard, crucial in a region with only seven inches of rainfall a year. An adjacent garden grows local fruits such as apples, peaches and watermelons and is irrigated by water from the cistern.

Owner/Client: Green River Community Center, c/o Ms. Joni Pace
Project Team: Marlon Blackwell, FAIA; Meryati Blackwell; Jonathan Boelkins, Assoc. AIA; Austin Chatlelain, Assoc. AIA; Michael Pope; Bradford Payne; Stephen Reyenga



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