Nineteen years ago, Boaz & Ruth, Inc. was founded as a faith-based “social entrepreneurial” vision designed around a training center and store located on the northside Highland Park community in the city of Richmond.
As we approach our 20th anniversary, the full renovation of the Benefield Building and addition of affordable housing will launch Boaz & Ruth into the next phase of the organization’s history.
Renewing the interior and exterior of the Benefield building is about providing space, revenue, and opportunities for Highland Park residents. The renovated Six Points Innovation Center (6PIC) space will have an added maker space, and will take advantage of new and flexible layouts, so that the momentum and impact that the 6PIC programs have created will continue. A key factor in this project is flexibility. Being able to convert spaces within the building to meet community, program, and environmental needs is a goal of the renovation. The main entrance and co-working space that will sit adjacent to 6PIC will host live performances, yoga lessons, and more. This will all take place next to retail space designed to generate revenue for the Highland Park community. The floors above will provide space for affordable housing and community spaces designed with a laundry facility, rooftop garden and a commercial kitchen. All designed to encourage and nurture community. New programs, activities and gatherings will bring new ideas, new opportunities, economic growth, diversity, and positive change.
The design process of this project has used the community based design model. We’ve hosted community meetings, interviews, events, surveys and more in an effort to ensure continual listening to community throughout the process. We are attempting to craft the community that Highland Park needs and that Highland Park desires. A community where living, learning, working all occur simultaneously and according to how the community prefers. Residents, community leaders, religious leaders, architects, designers, students, government officials, and more have all participated in conversations and planning sessions.
The Benefield Project is dedicated toward building a future through a unique live/work model where the highland park community will thrive and reach toward new heights with access to strategic synergies and innovative resources. The adaptive reuse design and process example of a thoughtful community of equality through the strength of Black history and diversity.