Serving up new Neighborhood Amenities in Richmond
Church Hill North
Church Hill North
This mixed-use building brings job training and nutrition education to an underserved neighborhood. The anchor tenant is the Kitchens at Reynolds, the seat of Reynolds Community College’s culinary arts, hospitality, and entrepreneurship programs. In addition to classrooms and teaching kitchens, the Kitchens’ space includes a ground-floor café that provides students with direct food service experience and the locals with fresh and healthy prepared foods. A demonstration kitchen with tiered seating accommodates community cooking and nutrition classes, and a courtyard greenhouse grows produce for classes and the café.
The building’s upper floors house apartments and two commercial spaces with panoramic views of the downtown skyline, one of which is designed for restaurant use.
At a fraught time both nationally and locally, when many people are contemplating economic and racial inequalities, reworking historical narratives, and enhancing environmental and outdoor options, the arrival of the Kitchens at Reynolds delivers a new kind of monument where brilliant, smart and highly practical architecture is a tool for enhancing community engagement and inspiring an optimistic future.
Creating Urban Density
The new building contributes to the creation of a lively urban node at the intersection of Nine Mile Road, Fairmount Avenue, and North 25th Street. Building users and residents have easy access to a new grocery store, pharmacy, and health clinic among other businesses in this burgeoning area.
A New Neighborhood Landmark
The design, marked by large expanses of glass and a cantilevered wing, announces a new era of investment in this historically underserved community. Though the overall effect is striking, the primary materials – glass, steel, and concrete– were chosen for durability and ease of maintenance.
Investing in the East End
Richmond’s East End has been shaped by policies that concentrated poverty on the city’s eastern edge. This economic isolation thwarted residents’ access to nutritious food, health services, and educational opportunities. Our work advances community-centered development in this part of the city.
Human and environmental health are at the center of the building’s design. All regularly occupied spaces have access to daylight and views of the outdoors. Efficient building systems save water and energy, and durable finishes will rarely need to be replaced.