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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Center for Civil and Human Rights, Atlanta,Georgia, United States

Freelon/HOK selected for Civil Rights Museum

The Freelon Group with HOK has been selected to design the new Center for Civil and Human Rights (CCHR) to be located in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The team bested designs by Diller Scofidio + Renfro with Stanley Beaman & Sears; Huff + Gooden Architects with Hammel Green and Abrahamson; Moody Nolan with Antoine Predock Architect; and Polshek Partnership Architects with Cooper Carry and Stanley Love-Stanley PC.

Freelon, which is based in North Carolina, has designed several cultural facilities that celebrate the struggles and the achievements of African Americans and is currently short listed to design the Smithsonian’s new Museum of African American History and Cultural in Washington D.C.

Freelon’s winning design features two interlocking terra cotta clad buildings surrounding an open courtyard, which is to function as an amphitheatre and exhibit space. The design is inspired by “the simple yet powerful image of interlocking arms that signifies the linkages that empower individuals and groups of seemingly divergent interests to find common ground,” said Philip Freelon, a Principal with the firm.

The new center will focus on continuing education and be a nexus for dialog and understanding about the universal struggle for civil and human rights, organizers said. It will reflect pre-Civil Rights movement history, the history of the movement in Atlanta and throughout the nation, as well as the struggle for equal rights across the globe. Organizers hope the facility will stimulate visitation to Atlanta's other Civil Rights landmarks, such as the King Center, Atlanta University Center and Ebenezer Baptist Church.

The $125 million facility is expected to open in 2012.

Sharon McHugh
US Correspondent
architecture NOW

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