Ko-Tyit' HAHN Center
In Keres, the name of this building means “the Cochiti People.” From the onset, this complex was envisioned to be an activity center to be used to gather family members on a daily basis for recreation, education, health and fitness, and community restoration. The Diabetes Program staff also suggested that HAHN should be an acronym representing all the different aspects of the project:
HEALTH, AGRICULTURE, HEALING, NURTURING
Community discussions regarding the Center began as early as 2001. Council discussions regarding the need for a youth facility began several years before that. At the request of Governor Regis Pecos, Elizabeth while partner at another firm, was asked to facilitate several public planning meetings to determine the wants, desires, and needs of the community. To ensure that the meetings were honest representations of the wants, needs and desires of each community group, smaller groups were organized. A design committee was formed with cross-generational representation. Several planning meetings were held with this group. Separate planning meetings were held with the youth, with the middle-aged adults, and with the elders. The public meetings began with a history of the concept, a history of the origin of the money, some key observations by the Governors regarding the social and community problems that they all faced, and the fundamental question: “What kind of community do we want to be in the next 50 Years?” It was shocking to the facilitators and to the Governors that the ideas and concerns expressed by the individual groups were in sync with each other. Each generation had a similar answer to the question, and each group desperately wanted the help, love and respect of the other groups to fulfill the long-term vision.
These planning meetings were vital because they changed the community’s vision of the facility. What was originally conceived as a recreational center to keep the kids busy after school became a place for families to gather, play, exercise and learn. Elizabeth Suina, with her previous organization CORE, Ltd was selected to complete full service architectural services in connection with the project.