Back in 2009, we learned that the Lower East Side Girls Club would be getting an amazing new green community center to be the first and only Girls Club in NYC. The development finally broke ground last year, and construction is in full swing. Designed by Cutsogeorge Tooman and Allen Architects, the 30,000 square foot facility includes a planetarium, dance theater, and in-house kitchen and bakery. Plus, thanks to a green roof, solar power, and many other sustainable features, the new building is set to receive LEED Gold. It will open in late 2012.
The Lower East Side Girls Club, in partnership with Dermont Company, is well on its way to completing the new state of the art community center, dedicated to helping young women learn and grow through various education and leadership programs. The organization also aims to raise environmental awareness among its more than 400 members, which after expansion, will be 1200. In addition to the planetarium, the facility will have a library, theater, multimedia center, yoga studios, laboratory space, and outdoor space on the green roof.
The center will also include an additional 12-story mixed income building featuring 78 rental units and ground-floor retail space between East 7th and 8th Streets. Works crews have already laid the foundation for the main site, and now that the weather is getting warmer, the pace of construction will most likely pick up as well.
After a required archaeological analysis of the site, the club has also discovered that the new location has great historical importance. It was used in the 1830s as a shipbuilding yard that had developed the first Civil War era iron clad ships, and the site was also later used by two young teenage girls who use to live there. The center will research their lives and will host a presentation in the planetarium.