Change Labs Entrepreneurship Hub

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Tuba City, Navajo Nation, Arizona

Change Labs is a Native-led and Native-controlled 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based on the Navajo and Hopi Nation seeking to foster the creation of successful Native American small businesses that provide a social benefit to Tribal communities. In choosing to build a Change Labs space in Tuba city, part of the design process required the recognition of community narratives and a recognition of community values, both Diné (Navajo) and Hopi.

MASS conducted workshops with Change Labs leadership, core staff and key stakeholders on organizational challenges and opportunities, analyzing the organization’s key programs, needs, spatial relationships, and roadblocks. MASS designed the entrepreneurship hub, including service areas, office spaces, conference and training spaces, and a cafe space.

Recognizing the importance of providing safe spaces during the COVID-19 Pandemic, MASS developed a phased approach to optimize safety and adapt to changing conditions over time with minimal construction labor and expense through a flexible design approach.

The 1,400-square-foot work and event space, meeting area, and community center is the first building of its kind for business owners and creatives on the Navajo Nation. The 1-acre site also includes additional sheltered spaces for community use. By anchoring resources locally, Change Labs envisions a space that nurtures a sense of possibility and opportunity of becoming an entrepreneur on the reservation.

Project Details

36.136906, -111.240173

Location: Tuba City, Navajo Nation, Arizona

Year: 2023

Status: Completed

Size: 1,400 sq ft

Program: Architectural and landscape design for an innovation hub to lift up Native entrepreneurs, artists and farmers across Hopi lands and the Navajo Nation.

Services: Accompaniment, Visioning, Predesign, Schematic Design

Change Labs

Rock Gap Engineering
N8tive Productions: Chandler Willie