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Region Ten - Louisa

In February 2024, we were honored to participate in a groundbreaking ceremony for the newest Region Ten Community Services building in Louisa, Virginia.



Region Ten Community Services Board is where people can go for help with mental health, substance use and/or developmental disabilities regardless of health insurance status. They provide more than 35 different programs to aid and support all ages, from babies with developmental delays, to teens who have experienced trauma to adults with serious mental illnesses, and those working to maintain a drug-free life. Their work in the Shenandoah and Charlottesville region is critical to the health and wellbeing of our community. 


Region Ten has been a long-time Design Develop client - our first, in fact! And since we started working together in 2012, we’ve had the pleasure of working on a total of 14 related mental wellness facilities. 



It means a lot in the design and architecture world to have repeat clients. It speaks to the level of communication and collaboration we like to have with our clients, and it also makes each subsequent project run a little smoother. As a client, the team at Region Ten is decisive, thoughtful and flexible at every step which are traits we are trying to embody every day as well. 


For this particular project, there were some up front design challenges we knew about right away. The site posed some limitations because of its slope. This required partially burying the building, which meant we had to get creative to ensure there was enough height between the two stories, and enough natural lighting opportunities. In a mental healthcare facility, natural lighting and a connection to the outside world are a critical part of making the space feel welcoming and calming. This is something that is consistent in the designs across different Region Ten buildings.



Another consistency inside all Region Ten buildings is a conscious effort to make sure interior spaces do not feel clinical. Warm wood tones, high ceilings, integrated ambient lighting and selective pops of color help keep it personable and welcoming rather than cold and sterile.



When designing multiple locations for a client, you want to make sure each individual project feels connected to the overall brand identity while also making sure each one has its own unique identity that’s determined by its context, time, and specific function. For this one, we looked at previous projects for reference, mixing in previously used finishes and materials with new and updated ones that provided a similar quality and feel.



Projects like this don’t happen without the hard work and input of a whole team. Much credit is due to the excellent preconstruction and construction team over at Martin Horn, ensuring everything in the design translated to the built environment. Dunbar Structural, MEI Engineering and Line and Grade contributed critical engineering services to this project. The County of Louisa staff helped usher this project through to a reality. And finally, the team at Region Ten deserves a huge tip of the hat for having the vision and fortitude to make every one of these projects happen in support of their community. 


We’re excited to watch this design come to life over the next several months, and are so honored to help Region Ten continue to expand their reach and critical assistance to those who need it. 


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