Boys & Girls Club Community Architecture

Because Spencer serves on the board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County, we’ve been privileged to provide a variety of pro bono design services over the years for this vital asset to our local community. Below, we’ll share some details of a few of those projects.

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Scope of Project/Services

  • First floor: We renovated the basement to provide the BGC with a large kitchen and an expansive multipurpose space. Off the larger space and along one wall is a long row of classrooms.
  • Second floor: We designed an addition on top of a flat roof on the first floor, connecting that addition to an existing second floor on a different part of the building. The addition provides another large multipurpose room.
  • Exterior: We renovated and updated the south façade (rear of the building) and updated the ADA ramp. We designed a roof over the entry door and a nice stone wall at the street with a new sign on the building itself.
  • Playground: We’ll describe the playground design below.

Special Requests or Needs of the Client or Job

The Boys and Girls Club, located on Church Street in Newport, RI, had a large, underutilized rectangular courtyard with a single basketball hoop and some playground equipment in the back of the club. The space was surrounded on two perpendicular sides by a chain link fence and the plain back side of buildings on the other two sides. The club wanted to convert the space into a fun, colorful playground and basketball court for children to enjoy the outdoors.

Challenges and Solutions 

First, we needed to clearly designate separate spaces for the playground and the basketball court. Second, the children needed seating and a place to store their backpacks. Third, the plain chain link fence surrounding two sides of the courtyard added to the cold, hard feeling of the space – we needed to brighten it up.

To separate the playground from the basketball court, we divided the courtyard down the middle with a row of 6 separate and colorful seating areas with cubbies for storage. Each cubby section is separated from the next with a bench between them. For additional seating, we designed a long bench along one side of the courtyard.

We livened up the entire space with bright colors for the half-court basketball court and the playground on the other side, and used our graphic design skills to design a brightly-colored fence wrap for the chain link fence. The fence wrap features silhouettes of children playing.

Special or Remarkable Features

The entire playground was transformed into a bright, playful, fun and safe space for our community’s children to hang out and enjoy themselves.

What We Enjoyed Most About this Project

Any time we are able to serve the community by enriching the lives of children and families, we’re excited to jump in. We love being a small part of the positive impact the Boys & Girls Club of Newport County has always had on Aquidneck Island.

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