first    followers    learning    lab

Type Renovation, design-build

Location Champaign IL

Design Aneesha Dharwadker and Conor O'Shea

Construction Marlon Mitchell, Annegien Zuidema, GoMAD Scholars + Volunteers

Date 2017-present

FirstFollowers is a non-profit based in Champaign, IL, that supports young people with re-entry into their communities after incarceration.

In 2017, a community member donated a home to the organization. The Learning Lab is a renovation of that home into a shared neighborhood asset, using design-build principles to teach carpentry, residential construction, and landscape skills to young Scholars in the program.

Construction began in January 2018 and is ongoing. Our role has been to provide design concept ideas, facilitate tutorials and charrettes, and frame landscape interventions as flexible and evolving throughout the seasons.


Aneesha Dharwadker, Conor O'Shea 

  • Black Facebook Icon
  • Black Twitter Icon
  • Black Instagram Icon

© 2019 Chicago Design Office.