FPCC Barn Opens

This spring, the Domokur team celebrated the completion of The Sullivan Barn by attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony in May. The Sullivan Barn is an adaptive re-use project our team completed for the Forest Preserves of Cook County in Illinois. Located on the grounds of Camp Sullivan, the renovated barn proudly displays its original character through the newly designed facade. The updated exterior mimics original design elements while enhancing the level of function and sustainability.

A challenge behind this re-use project was maintaining the existing historical features that make The Sullivan Barn unique. The original structure was built in the late 1800’s and reflects its history through rustic materials and quaint architectural details. Many of these characteristics were required to appear in the new design through the use of more durable and sustainable materials that would increase the lifetime of the building. The existing timber frame was preserved using Structural Insulated Panels for an energy efficient and quickly installed envelope.

This 4,650 square foot barn also received an updated interior that allows it to now serve as a hub of activity for the camp and potential event space for the public. Complete with a new concession area and catering kitchen, Domokur Architects was able to create highly functional spaces designed to increase efficiency during camp programs or events. The addition of an indoor climbing wall also creates an opportunity for a wider variety of activities to be offered at The Sullivan Barn.

Aside from these interior features, each common space and gathering area received additional seating, durable finishes, and outdoor access to the patio and deck. Access to outdoor space was an essential component of the renovation because it allows staff to utilize additional areas for large groups, program kickoffs, and outdoor activities. However, the two story barn created accessibility challenges. With the use of a geofoam product that allowed the earth to ramp against the side of the building without adding lateral loads to existing walls, on-grade access was made possible for both levels. A platform lift connects the two levels on the interior.

Through architectural and interior design services, the Domokur team accomplished a unique design while reflecting the original open feel of the space. Each newly renovated area now showcases the rustic charm that makes The Sullivan Barn a wonderful place to visit.