Capital South Campus Center

Organization Name: CSArch, Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region, Omni Development Company and the Albany Housing Authority

Project Title: Capital South Campus Center

Project Location: Albany, New York’s Historic South End Neighborhood

Project Goals:
The vision for the Capital South Campus Center (CSCC) stemmed from the City of Albany’s 2007 revitalization plan. Created by community stakeholders, the plan identified this project as phase 1 of a larger development plan, which culminated from a series of community charrettes. This community engagement lead to the creation of a belief statement: “The Community is the Campus; The Center is the Portal.”

The center’s long-term goal is to stabilize disadvantaged families, position them for future employment, and ultimately increase the median household income in the city. To make this happen, the center will reduce barriers to education and workforce development, become a viable recruiting resource for local businesses, and serve as a symbol of equal access and unlimited potential for the community. The center seeks to encourage residents to become active and invested community members. This project seeks to inspire similar collaborations and solutions throughout the country.

Project Description:
The CSCC is a mixed-use educational campus center in Albany’s South End neighborhood. The development, design, and construction of the 17,500 SF center was made possible by a $4.98 million grant from the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development with additional funds from the Albany Housing Authority (AHA). Designed by CSArch, the center is owned by the AHA and is operated by Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region. Representing a hybrid of education, social and community services, government, and business, the facility serves many functions. It provides office space to community groups, chambers of commerce, and other groups like the Center for Economic Growth. It also hosts area colleges with education and training space. A classroom designated for a nearby community college’s Culinary Arts Program doubles as a home to the Senior Services of Albany’s Meals-on-Wheels’ kitchen. Child care, youth programming, and early intervention counseling are also integrated within the space.

Community Impact:
Since the grand opening in October 2014, the center has emerged as a hub for educational advancement and economic growth. A testament to the wide-spread investment in this project, more than 50 educational and community partners currently offer services or occupy space at the facility. It has improved the coordination of existing social service providers by acting as a network.

The CSCC has begun to reduce generational economic poverty, school avoidance and dropout rates, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) dependence, homelessness, food insecurity, violence, foster care, and criminal justice system entanglements.

1,108 adult learners participated in classes and workshops, including: 240 who enrolled in the Advanced Technology and Information Networking Lab; 400 who enrolled in English for Speakers of Other Languages and High School Equivalency classes; 126 individuals who met with an employment retention specialist; and 20 individuals who have acquired employment.

Organization Description:
CSArch A leading architecture and engineering firm in New York State, CSArch delivers building design solutions for educational, civic, cultural, corporate, and institutional organizations. Founded in 1991, our firm has steadily grown to employ nearly 60 passionate professionals who have earned us a reputation for valuing relationships, hard work, and design excellence. CSArch is based in Albany and Newburgh, New York. The Albany Housing Authority The Albany Housing Authority is an agency dedicated to providing high-quality, affordable and sustainable housing opportunities while continuing to promote economic independence and stability for residents. Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region Founded in 1912, Trinity Alliance is a social services agency whose mission is to improve the neighborhood as a setting for family life by contributing to health and well-being and by promoting education and employment as a means of self-development.

    Exterior Dusk View in South End Neighborhood

    Reception/Security Desk and Small Café

    Daytime Exterior View

    Commons Area with Views to Outside (Photography Credit: Randall Perry Photography)

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