Officials with the Helen R. Walton Children’s Enrichment Center of Bentonville announced Tuesday that LTL Architects will be the architect of record for the nonprofit’s new $14.3 million early childhood and training facility.
LTL Architects is a design intensive architecture firm founded in 1997 by Paul Lewis, Marc Tsurumaki and David J. Lewis, located in New York City. The firm was chosen through the Walton Family Foundation’s Northwest Arkansas Design Excellence Program, a pilot project with the goal of elevating the quality of architectural and landscape design in Northwest Arkansas.
LTL Architects will work with local partners Hight Jackson Associates of Rogers, Harrison French & Associates of Bentonville and East-Harding Construction of Little Rock. These firms will be the local architect, MEP and civil engineer, and construction team, respectively.
“We are thrilled to be given the opportunity to work in concert with the HWCEC, ECIC, and the excellent team engaged in this important building,” David J. Lewis, principal of LTL Architects, said in a news release. “This is an exceptionally interesting and unique project that will have a dramatic impact for years to come in the community.
- “In collaboration with SCAPE Landscape Architecture, we look forward to designing and realizing a dynamic and unprecedented place to nurture children through the integration of architecture and nature at this significant site in Bentonville.”
Construction plans were announced last fall. The 43,700-SF building will include 35,000 SF for the HWCEC, and 8,700-SF for the center’s Early Childhood Initiatives Center, a sister company that was opened by the HWCEC in 2009.
Both centers are presently housed in a 32,000-SF building on Northeast Wildcat Way, behind Washington Junior High in Bentonville.
The new facility will be built on an 8-acre site on a hayfield that runs along Northeast J Street, just south of the entrance to the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.
“I believe they [LTL Architects] are going to create something beyond our wildest imagination,” Michelle Barnes, executive director of the HWCEC and ECIC, said in the release.
HWCEC development manager Sunny Lane said the project is approximately 90 percent funded. Since the construction announcement was made in September, $183,000 has been pledged to push the capital campaign total to $12.72 million.
A community forum will be held from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. March 18 at the Avondale Chapel and Gardens in Bentonville to introduce the design team and provide an opportunity to hear the project plan for the coming months.