The project arose as a collaboration between SHoP Architects and Martha Murphy, a local resident, following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Immediately after the storm, SHoP coordinated government and volunteer work days to clear a site and erect a 5,000 square foot tent to house a temporary distribution center. The team then started work on a permanent community center, which was completed within one year.
The 10,000 square foot facility made space for a restaurant, market, bookstore, and a mutli-purpose community room. Elements of the wooden truss were digitally designed for ease of assembly from readily-available dimensional lumber.