NIST Child Care Center

Location: Gaithersburg Maryland
Client: National Institute of Standards & Technology
Area: 23,300 SF
Completion: 2012

Colimore Architects conducted a feasibility study, programming and schematic design to develop a solution to expand and replace the existing Child Care Center for the children of staff and family members working at the Gaithersburg, Maryland, National Institute for Standards and Technology campus. This one-story, 23,300 square foot new facility includes accommodations for infant and 2-3 year old care, accredited pre-school and Kindergarten programs as well as after school programs for school aged children in accordance with NAEYC, GSA and NIST guidelines. Administration services, staff support areas, dietary preparation, laundry and a large multipurpose space are included in the building. The exterior activity area incorporates both covered and uncovered hard surface play space with three separate age appropriate softscape play areas with recreational equipment and activity structures. The entire facility is enclosed within a security plane with controlled access to the exterior play area and building via a card access system.

The study included the analysis of and solutions for a new structure on two separate sites. Each site was reviewed for site access, adjacency to public transportation, on-campus traffic patterns, availability of utilities, site development, grading, parking, building solution and site placement. A schematic design solution, with 3D models, was completed for each site. After the completion of the study CAI was awarded the design contract.

Colimore utilized a charrette process with NIST staff and Child Car Center staff and Board members to develop the ‘L’ shaped plan. This configuration allowed for direct supervision of each corridor from the central knuckle. The intersection of the legs of the ‘L’ creates the central access point and secure entry. Administrative and staff support spaces occupy the area adjacent to the secure entry point with child spaces located along each leg of the ‘L’.