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Phoenix school for blind getting makeover

A rendering of the new Foundation for Blind Children East Valley Campus is shown. (Photo: The Inspire Design Foundation)

PHOENIX -- Summer break at the Foundation for Blind Children East Valley Campus isn't much of a break at all.

Work is underway on a major makeover at the school, thanks to a young design student's concept and the Inspire Design Foundation, the charitable arm of Scottsdale-based IMI Design Studio.

"We are trying to create a miracle is what we're trying to do," said Anita Lang, founder of IMI Design Studio. "I'm hoping to hear lots of laughter and cries of joys when the kids come back and especially when the teachers come back."

They have a lot of work to do before school starts in early August. Lang said many things are being designed and built off-campus and the first contractors will show up Friday. A Braille abstract featuring a poem will welcome students and they'll find many textures throughout the building.

"And the other component was the function of the space," said Lang. "They spend a lot of time on their floor because a lot of the students not only do they have impairment visually, but also other physical limitations and handicaps. So a lot of times they're sitting on the floor working through different types of lessons so even just making sure the comfort of the floor, putting a pad underneath the flooring so that it easily functions for them."

Several vendors, artisans and architects have donated materials and labor, but Lang said they need cash, especially to do the flooring. For more information, go to imidesignstudio.com.

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