The $15 million J.B. and Johnelle Hunt Family Children’s Safety Center of Washington Co. celebrated its grand opening on Dec. 12 at 3242 Gene George Blvd. in Springdale.
Construction of the 15,200-square-foot facility south of Arvest Ballpark started in June 2022. Baldwin & Shell Construction in Springdale was the general contractor. Bentonville firm BUF Studio was the architect. Henderson Engineers of Bentonville provided mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) design services as the building systems design engineer.
Other partners were Ecological Design Group of Rogers as the landscape architect, Engineering Services Inc. of Springdale as the civil engineer and Martin/Martin Consulting Engineers of Bentonville as the structural engineer.
Founded in 1997, the Children’s Safety Center (CSC) is a child-friendly, family-centered organization that serves Washington County. It assists in children’s sexual and physical abuse cases by coordinating the investigation, prosecution process and treatment services to prevent further trauma to children during the process.
The new building replaces the former CSC location on Emma Avenue downtown, tripling the space available for the nonprofit to administer victim advocacy, forensic interviews, medical evaluations, therapy and other related services.
The building is partitioned into three secure wings:
• lobby and administrative functions in the first
• rehab and therapy rooms in the second
• support and community outreach areas in the third
Handprints were a signature design feature of CSC’s former facility. Every child who visited was allowed to paint their hands and leave a print on the wall to symbolize their emotional road to recovery.
The building displayed approximately 14,000 handprints, and that tradition carried over to the new structure. All original handprints from the walls of the original CSC will be projected on the new building at night and are exhibited as art pieces, and any new handprints will be displayed on canvases.