Morenci Day Care Center

Feasibility Study + Design

The Freeport-McMoRan Morenci Operations identified a comprehensive feasibility study of a new day care center for Morenci, Arizona as a high priority for 2012. In 2011, Barker Rinker Seacat Architecture was hired to solicit input from the public, determine program components, assess alternative site locations, develop project budgets, create a business plan, produce a concept design on the selected site, and document the findings in a report. BRS participated in two workshops, the first of which included a separate public meeting for the day care center. Multiple locations at the Burro Alley site received preliminary analysis; three were prioritized for additional study before the final site location was selected for detailed analysis.

The design team conducted an exercise with the public to develop consensus about project program elements and budget. BRS then refined the building program along with project costs and developed sketch plans that could be test fit. During this time, it was determined that the new day care facilities could become the eastern anchor of an overall new town center that would include the existing theater, library, Morenci Club and new community center. Three new “Town Center” concepts were created to analyze the potential of the area. Once the final building arrangement was selected, a more detailed investigation of this concept commenced. The plan and form were refined, the vehicle circulation and parking were developed in greater detail, and the budget for the day care facility was reviewed.

The result is a new 6,650-s.f. day care center and future site enhancements to include parking improvements, sidewalk landscaping and a new community plaza. The new 55,000-s.f. Morenci Community Center is currently under construction.

Project at a Glance


Morenci, Arizona


Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.


$2.4 million


6,650 s.f.



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