As part of a community renewal project, EXP partnered with the City of Saint John to spearhead the revitalization of a disadvantaged neighborhood. To inspire new life into a two-story north end community center constructed in the mid-1970s, EXP’s developed an innovative design approach to create a landmark within the city and empower the neighborhood through a strong sense of identity. This method addressed the community’s needs of accessibility, safety and utilizing the flexibility of space for diverse programming.
To achieve a sense of familiarity for the community while simultaneously inviting new opportunities for change, EXP also upheld familiarity in key design elements while incorporating new materials. To mirror the strength of One Change, a community-based group who would occupy the community center, heavy materials including timber glulam were used during the construction phase to match existing structures, and new additions were developed to include an entrance lobby and exit stairwell, representing accessibility, fire safety upgrades and a symbol of growth.
The C.E. Nicolle Community Centre was completed with interior renovations to provide an industrial, high-tech look and feel. The renovations welcome visitors to a center that the pride of Saint John.