Mahalia Jackson Photos

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John C. Williams Architects
824 Baronne St.
New Orleans, Louisiana 70113
p: 504.566.0888
f: 504.566.0897
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Mahalia Jackson School


Mahalia Jackson is an Early Childhood and Family Learning Center for children age birth to five, which is attempting to revolutionize the way educators prepare infants for kindergarten. With the support of donors, such as the Kaiser Foundation and Cox Cable, the program will focus on education, health, social and community outreach, and literacy. The most ambitious goal of this program is to guarantee a highschool diploma for 100% of the youths who enter the program at birth.

This 50,000 square-foot, 15 million-dollar facility will be equipped to be fully sustainable, and John C. Williams Architects has been the Architect and Planner for the project since its inception.

The project will include a public library, health clinic, adult-learning center, job training center, computer lab, laundromat, and the first Neighborhood Place installation, an initiative of Governor Bobby Jindal's Health and Human Resources Department.

Williams Architects organized and moderated a series of community meetings, or charrettes, to design a program that meets the needs of the immediate community. Mahalia Jackson School will be a prototype for similar schools in needy communities throughout the greater New Orleans area.

The building was designed in 1953 by Charles Colbert, a progressive Modernist Architect. One of the goals of the renovation is to maintain and enhance the sustainable features of the original design.

The projected Completion date is January 2010.

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