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Kearney Early Childhood Education Center learning hallway with striped tree mural and hanging cloud accents under skylight
Kearney Early Childhood Education Center

Adaptive Reuse Serves Dual Purpose


Kearney School District

Project Location

Kearney, MO




26,500 SF

Kearney Early Education Center’s design responds to the district’s increasing need to accommodate exponential growth across the community. The adaptive reuse of an existing grocery store serves two functions – an early childhood program as well as a new district office. The early childhood component along the east side of the facility comprises classrooms ranging from infant care to Pre-K, all connected by an expansive discovery zone for child engagement and hands-on learning. Classroom spaces have ample transparency to allow for passive supervision and access to daylight, which is achieved through three new skylights.

The district office, occupying the west side of the facility, incorporates seven private offices, a collaborative working space, central café, and varying sized conference rooms. A new district board room, which can be divided into three spaces through operable partitions, serves dually as a meeting space and play area for kids in the adjacent early childhood facility. Additional support spaces include a kitchen for early childhood, shared workroom, and reception. DLR Group provided architecture, interior design, and MEP engineering services.

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