The Friendship House Community Center was founded in 1956 with a vision of providing social, recreational, educational and community activities to the residents of southeast Bakersfield. In 2006, CAPK received grants from the State of California Parks and Recreation and the City of Bakersfield to build a new youth and community center. 19six Architects was retained to assist in the planning, development, and design of the new community center. One of the driving factors in the design was the very tight budget. A metal building system was selected in order to provide the large volume required for a gymnasium in a cost effective manner. In addition, the grant imposed a very tight time frame that required the building plans, permit and construction to be completed within one year.
19six assisted in prioritizing the needs of the stakeholders and tailoring the program to the budget. The community center includes a gymnasium, kitchen, restrooms, offices, storage and four classrooms. The outdoor area has a hardcourt area, soccer field, and baseball field and a 60-space parking lot. The Friendship House was master planned with a community school for the Kern County Superintendent of Schools occupying the north end of the site so that both projects will be able to share the facilities.