kobayashi + zedda

Old Crow Community Centre
Old Crow, Yukon


In 2014, Kobayashi + Zedda Architects Ltd (KZA) was retained by the Vuntut Gwitchin Government (VGG) to design a new Community Centre to be located in the community of Old Crow, Yukon. The new facility is to house a new Community Hall, Elder’s Lounge, Commercial Kitchen, Games Room, meeting spaces, administrative offices and support spaces.

The existing Community Hall is beyond its useful life and was completed prior to 1980. It occupies an area of approximately 556 square meters and consists of a community hall, kitchen and support spaces. Once construction of the new Community Centre is complete, the existing hall will be dismantled and erected elsewhere in the community. To minimize disruption to ongoing community events, the existing community hall will remain in operation until the new centre is complete and ready for occupancy.

The new Community Centre will be located directly to the west of the existing community hall on a site once occupied by the Northern Store. Both the Northern Store building and church residence are in the process of being relocated to make way for the new building. As part of the new Community Centre development, a portion of the waterfront road located in front of the building will be transitioned to a pedestrian walkway while still maintaining emergency vehicle access.

The community felt strongly about maintaining the egalitarian and friendly circular shape and wood finish of the existing hall in the new facility. KZA addressed this community desire by proposing a circular, round form to enclose the Community Hall and accentuate the circle structurally. With the Community Hall and Entry/Lounge being the key areas of the building, they will also be provided with a greater interior height. The building from is divided into two volumes of differing height connected by a curved parapet to subtly echo the rounded shape of the plan. The building is also shaped to maximize views of the waterfront and Porcupine River to the South, and provide a welcoming curved edge as one approaches on the main approach road from the west.