November is National Native American Heritage Month. As a Native American-Owned firm, we are honored to partake in this celebration of diverse cultures, rich traditions, and profound history. Since 2019, Method has had the privilege of contributing to the Native American community through multiple tribal projects. Working under agencies including Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, the tribal projects we are working on span across New Mexico, Oklahoma, and North Dakota, and include a full range of services including conceptual design, architectural construction documents, interior design, engineering through our consulting partners, and construction administration services.
When we are not collaborating with Native and indigenous communities on design projects, our team is also actively looking for ways to volunteer, advocate, and learn more about different tribal communities, their history, and their culture. In 2020 the Method Cares committee in partnership with the AIA, created and donated over 200 children’s STEM activity books to the Choctaw Nation to help provide at-home activities for kids during COVID. In 2021 Method’s Managing Partner, Rayburn Jake Donaldson spearheaded the launch of a Houston chapter for the Native American Business Association, an organization that serves to advocate and connect Native American Businesses.
Below are a few of our projects with native tribes and organizations:
Shiprock Associated Schools, Inc. (SASI), is a Bureau of Indian Education funded grant school located in the Navajo reservation in Shiprock, New Mexico. Our team worked on the 20% design phase deliverables for a new dormitory. With the help of SASI leadership and staff, the design team focused on four primary cultural and historical components to take into consideration for this concept: Hogan, Sacred Mountains and Cardinal Direction, Agriculture and Landscape, Tsé Bitʼaʼí (Shiprock).
Change Labs is a Native-led and Native-controlled nonprofit organization based on the Diné (Navajo) and Hopi Nation. They aim to create a place for Native entrepreneurs to develop their ideas and grow their business through workspace, tools, and resources. Method volunteered our resources to create schematic designs for this project to generate a conversation to potentially redevelop the outdated buildings on tribal land.
Hugo Daycare Facility for Choctaw Nation
Method is working on design deliverables for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma on multiple daycare facilities within the nation including the Hugo facility which is a ground up 14,099 SF child development center that will accommodate future expansions for the Head Start Program. The Head Start Program is a comprehensive early childhood development program that promotes school readiness by enhancing the social and cognitive development of children and is primarily directed at economically disadvantaged families that have children ages three to five years old.
We work with a team of talented architects, designers, and engineers including many Native American consultants to bring our tribal and native community projects to life. Our ego-free approach serves to broaden indigenous voices through design, while creating new opportunities for the native community. The goal of the design for each project is to listen, learn, and create meaningful architecture that is a worthy symbol of each native community’s unique history, culture, and values.