Alief Neighborhood Center

, City of Houston

Houston, TX

Alief exterior
reading corner
arts and crafts room
recording studio
walking track
exterior playground

The new 70,000 SF center and renovated park are home to after-school and summer-enrichment programs, youth recreation leagues, and activities for seniors. The public library provides community access to books and technology and the center houses a women, infant, and children clinic, expanding Houston Health Department’s Diabetes and Wellness Network. Community engagement was critical to understanding what makes Alief unique and how best to address local needs.

Conceived as a result of extensive outreach conversations, the center brings vital public health programs to the neighborhood and serves every age group, showcasing amenities such as music and video makerspaces, an art room, fitness center, swimming pool, recreational fields, and nature trails. Families can gather in a food truck area for weekend markets or listen to music on the event lawn. People can “catch air” at the skate park or sprint up Mount Alief, the uphill running track. Featuring the “biggest front porch in Texas” — a large, covered porch that serves as a gathering place for people to come together and share ideas — the center gives expression to the diverse community unique to Alief.

From the porch, visitors are welcomed by a floor-to-ceiling glass entry lobby that frames views of the park and reinforces a strong relationship between interior and exterior activities. Raised out of the floodplain, the Alief Neighborhood Center is a model for resilient design in a post-Hurricane Harvey environment — a respite for those seeking shelter and a long-awaited nucleus for the Alief neighborhood.

Building Facts

  • 70,000 SF
  • 38-acre Site
  • LEED Silver

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