Adaptive reuse project creates nature-inspired Bright Futures Preschool based on early learner research
A retrofit transforms a portion of a department store turned church into a 28,000-square-foot early learning center. The design, based on research into how Galesburg’s youngest students learn best, brings nature and daylight into the building.
Columns double as simulated trees with metal and acoustic panel leaves floating on the ceiling. Curving corridor walls portray nature, show letters, and display children’s work. Simplified tree graphics and large tactile numbers identify classrooms while teaching counting and number recognition.
Colorful floor patterns in front of classrooms support counting, lining up, and wayfinding. Luxury vinyl tile (LVT) flooring integrates plots of green carpeting (grass) and a curving LVT blue strip (river).
This retrofit also includes the Legat-designed Galesburg Area Vocational Center and a district office. Randomly placed windows with pops of color identify the early learning portion of the shared facility.
Award of Merit, Illinois Association of School Boards