Since the 1960’s, Opportunity Builders, Inc., located in Anne Arundel County, MD, has been serving adults with developmental disabilities. OBI provides a motivational environment that offers vocational training, employment opportunities, recreational activities and support services with a goal towards promoting personal fulfillment and fostering independence. This new 42,000 SF facility is located on a 14.5 acre parcel and provides the much needed room for OBI’s growing services and clientele. In order to best satisfy the large amount of required programmatic space within the proposed budget, Purple Cherry Architects’ design evolved within the constraints of a predominantly pre-engineered structure. The Kalwall entry wall and blue metal spine clearly identified the formal entry to the building. The spine further identified the interior circulation corridor that visually links the front of the building to the client programs located on the rear. At the intersection of fie individual pre-engineered structures, Purple Cherry Architects established a central light-filled skewed node with direct visual links to the three exterior sides of the building.
The building includes administrative headquarters, staff lounge, a multipurpose room, classrooms, computer labs, a nurse’s station, meeting and conference rooms, vocational training rooms, a recreation and leisure room that houses space for sensory and music therapy, and a galley kitchen. The large arts & crafts room, as well as a new area for games, enables OBI to offer a wider variety of activities that will enhance their clients’ development and growth. The visitor’s entry is located along the administrative area, which flans the front of the entrance elevation. The entryway for clients connects off the corner of the building with the extension of a covered canopy to the van parking area. The circulation spine is filled with natural light by overhead skylighting. The client corridor is wide, colorful, and lined with protection board along the lower half for added durability.