McGaw YMCA Meta Media

Evanston, Illinois / United States of America

Evanston’s McGaw YMCA MetaMedia is a new digital media lab that combines youth interests and production centered learning experience with instruction adults who support learning in a collaboration and critical way. By focusing on interest-powered and production-centered experience, MetaMedia can begin to connect youth to other learning and design principals. 

The Meta (Music, Engineering, Technology, Arts) Media program requires transformation of an existing 3,400 square foot space within a historic building and underutilized 90-year-old space. Recently completed, the design inserts a spine of new program and conceals the new utilities that had to be delivered to the space to accommodate the new technology while large expanses of glass provide visual connection between the music, office and workshop spaces. Overcoming technical and spatial constraints, MetaMedia is anchored by three custom designed millwork pieces identifying a central hub, dedicated 3d printer area and a seating ziggurat that comes apart via casters. The space programming had to accommodate engagement at many levels, from drop in clubs to intensive multi-week workshops, which is organized in distinct zones transitioning from public performance to private small group with areas for individual work throughout.  Over $70,000 of donated furnishings and materials were leveraged towards the project.



Architect of Record

Katherine Darnstadt
Latent Design
900 North Ashland Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60622
Phone: 312-344-1498
hello@latentdesign.net

General Contractor

Don Smith
Ross Burton
1540 S. Ashland Ave
Suite #102
Chicago, Illinois 60608
Phone: 312-957-6161
dsmith@rossburton.com

Consultant 1

Isaac Gaetz
CCJM Engineers
igaetz@ccjm.com

Consultant 2

Claire Tulloch
Designs 4 Dignity
claire@designsfordignity.org

Consultant 3

Christian Long
Wonder
christian@wonderbydesign.org

Photography

Latent Design

Direct image use from site prohibited. For inquiries on image use, or to obtain specific image credit in the event of multiple photographers, contact AIA Chicago.