Discovery Meadows Child Development Center

Location: Gaithersburg, MD
Size: 20,800 SF

Discovery Meadows Child Development Center’s mission is to provide safe, high-quality onsite childcare to the children of employees and local families. Working closely with a client focus group, the team prioritized connecting children to nature and creating a curriculum centered on exploring and understanding the natural world.

The curved plan frames the private forest area and the building steps down with the existing grades, providing direct access to the playground from each classroom. The site includes a multi-purpose space, roof terrace, STEM pavilion, and covered bridge. The program accommodates 144 children ranging from infants through preschoolers and an after-school program for 36 kids, ages 5-11.

Discovery Meadows was completed in 2017, and achieved LEED Platinum certification. In 2018, the project earned the K-12 Education Award of Merit from Engineering News Record Mid-Atlantic. In 2020, the project was awarded Innovative Project of the Year – New Construction, Commercial from USGBC National Capital Region.

Photography by Ulf Wallin and studioMLA.