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Rita R. Church Community Center

GWWO, Inc./Architects

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2101 Saint Lo Drive





Baltimore City Recreation and Parks


  • Structural Engineer: Faisant Associates, Inc.
  • Mechanical Engineer: Sidhu Associates
  • Electrical Engineer: Sidhu Associates
  • Plumbing Engineer: Sidhu Associates
  • Geotechnical Engineer: The Robert B. Balter Company

Project Status


Year Completed



17,621 sq. feet

Construction Cost

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Project Description

Designed in 1920 as a two-level bath house fashioned in Classical Revival style, the rehabilitated Rita R. Church Community Center is a contributing structure in a National Register Historic District. Previously neglected and left untouched, GWWO’s rehabilitation of this dilapidated structure breathed new life into the facility and made it a safe, beautiful destination for the community.

Rehabilitation included the exterior of the pool house, in accordance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, as well as the interior to accommodate program spaces. The original fabric of the exterior was in relatively good condition; hence the majority could be restored to its original condition. Non-contributing later additions to the original structure that distracted from the original concept were removed. Masonry blocks and wood panels that had been used to fill in some openings were removed and replaced with doors or panels to complement the style of the original structure.

The upper level open-air pavilion was enclosed with a curtain wall system, containing both solid and glazed panels. Serving as a back-drop to the original columns that define the space, the glazing system, located behind the pilasters, complements the proportions of the historic structure.

The upper level program is comprised of a lounge, multi-purpose room, kitchen/craft room, game room, computer lab, and various support spaces. The lounge, located at the center of the building provides a tall open space that allows elements of the historic structure, such as the heavy timber trusses and masonry chimneys, to be integrated into the rehabilitation. All construction materials match or complement the original aesthetic.
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