Marmon Mok, partnering with Exigo Architects, was selected by the City of El Paso’s Library and Parks & Recreation Department to design three unique facilities: Valle Bajo Community Center & Library, Chamizal Recreational Center & Library, and the Lomaland Recreational Center as part of their 2012 Quality of Life Bond. All three facilities are of similar size with the same programmatic requirements, except for Lomaland which will not support a Library. When completed the facilities are to provide their respective communities with new services for years to come.
Valle Bajo Community Center & Library is sited along a major commercial artery running south parallel to the I10 highway, named Alameda. Encompassing a variety of exercise spaces including: a Gymnasium, Cardio Weights Room, Game Space, Multi-purpose Fitness, Public Library, Multi-purpose Community Room, Library, and an outdoor amphitheater, the project’s design distinguishes itself from its surroundings. Inspired by the dessert flowers found in El Paso, the roofs change heights and stagger like petals.
As part of each project, the City of El Paso’s MCAD (Museum & Cultural Affairs Department) is coordinating a major Public Art piece in an effort to support and enhance the cultural heritage of the city. For the Alameda project Osman Akan is developing a free-standing sculpture sited on the street front and support the community center’s place-making role along Alameda Street.