Indo-American Center

Location: West Ridge, Chicago
Client: Indo-American Center
Scope: Architecture, Programming
Progress/Year: 2023–Ongoing

The Indo-American Center is a community-based 501c3 organization founded in 1990. What initially began as a one-room office providing citizenship application assistance to the West Ridge community, has now become a comprehensive multi-service agency serving immigrant clients from over 30 nations with three main pillars of service: Immigration, Public Health, and Education. IAC is deeply rooted and connected to the community it serves, located at the heart of “Little India” along Devon Avenue in Chicago’s West Ridge neighborhood—the “port of entry” neighborhood for immigrants and refugees from South Asia.

The project goals include improving and updating existing spaces to create a more welcoming, functional, and efficient building. Another project goal is to create a shared community hub which will be a continued resource for both IAC’s social service activities but also for the activities of peer non-profit organizations. The design was inspired by an effort to celebrate South Asian Culture with a building that represents the community’s collective identity. Lastly, the design anticipates future growth and change by creating adaptable and multi-purpose spaces that allow the organization’s program to flex as needed based on the requirements of the community.