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JGMA-designed Brighton Park community health complex to break ground this summer

The new 48,500-square-foot facility will be the Southwest Side home of three non-profit groups

JGMA

A vacant Brighton Park lot at the southwest corner of California Avenue and 47th Street will soon see crews begin work on a new, angular medical facility. More closely resembling something from science fiction than a traditional city health clinic, the building’s highly unconventional shape comes from JGMA—the Chicago-based firm headed by architect Juan Gabriel Moreno.

The Colombian-born designer has a reputation for bringing well-designed, socially conscious projects to underserved communities. His firm is behind Northeastern Illinois University’s blue and yellow El Centro Campus flanking the Kennedy Expressway and the upcoming adaptive reuse of a shuttered Waukegan Kmart into a new school.

JGMA

While the Brighton project was first publicly revealed at last November’s meeting of the Chicago Plan Commission, a report by Crain’s recently shed more light on the $27 million project. Expected to break ground later this summer, the three-story facility will house no less than three nonprofit groups that will cater to a primarily Latino clientele.

These organizations include primary care provider Esperanza Health Centers, medical service administrator Sinai Health System, and Mujeres Latinas en Accion—a nonprofit providing youth programming and services related to domestic violence. The development will also include an on-site playground, meditation garden, and a large kitchen available for community use.

JGMA

Anticipated to open its doors in the fall of 2018, JGMA’s creation will provide vital services to an area that Esperanza Health Centers CEO Dan Fulwiler describes as a “primary care desert.” Meanwhile, Noble charter school network is planning the new Mansueto High School for an adjacent Brighton Park lot. Combined, the two projects are an encouraging sign for a community that "for so many years has seen disinvestment, not investment," Mr. Fulwiler told Crain’s.