Jefferson Park Exchange

5415 W Higgins Ave Chicagoundefined

Activating Neglected Space/Jefferson Park Exchange
Chicago Architecture Center
Written By Chicago Architecture Center

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John Ronan Architects


John Ronan Architects reimagines Jefferson Park as an authentic destination neighborhood for arts, culture and food, extending and enhancing the existing public park with a new civic cultural center consisting of a community art center, library and market to leverage the area’s cultural diversity and create a lively place of exchange.

Together, the structures frame a sunken plaza for community events: movie nights, concerts, picnics, lectures, public gatherings and, in winter, an ice skating rink. The Ed Paschke Arts Center provides studio space where local artists share their expertise while upper floors honor the life and work of the eponymous Chicago-based artist. The center forms a gateway with an adjacent market building, where local farmers and artisans exchange their goods; anchored on the north end by a demonstration kitchen and on the south by a farm-to-table café/restaurant, while the market’s rooftop supports an organic produce garden.

A neighborhood library completes the ensemble, reimagined as a place of exchange for ideas, skills and knowledge. Ed Paschke murals transform the nearby gritty highway underpass into an attractive gateway to a neighborhood transformed.

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Activating Neglected Space

Jefferson Park Exchange

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