A drug rehabilitation center for women with children

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


The design of a drug rehabilitation center for women with children incorporated the treatment theories of therapeutic communities. At the time this center was designed, only two facilities of this type were in use specifically for women. The Washington metropolitan area was in need of such a treatment program for women.

Three architectural concepts were studied which were appropriate for this type of facility: threshold, community and natural light. Threshold became a symbol for change. The development of a small community within was the unifying concept for this project. Natural light was developed as an important element which is a healing medicine for the psychological and mental health of a person.

Society needs to deal with the problem of drugs and the hold they take on people. It is no longer responsible for us to turn our heads from this affliction. Facilities such as the one developed in this thesis will help mothers overcome their addictions, while obtaining some family cohesion. The children that are able to participate with their mothers will hopefully avoid the same mistakes their own mothers made. One day they may grow up to become responsible, contributing parents and citizens.