By: Don Kim
“We strive to design buildings that enrich the lives of the people who use them – buildings that gracefully fulfill functional and technical expectations, yet appeal as fully to the senses as to the intellect.”
This is perhaps the most fundamental part of CO’s mission statement, something I deeply believe in, and have the privilege of pursuing on a daily basis as a healthcare architect.
The new flagship facility for the Shriners organization in Pasadena is a project that explores this commitment to human life through evidence based design. I feel fortunate to have been a part of this for the last three years. It was enormously satisfying to share our project’s design ideas during a construction tour I helped give, with Ron Rendina and Ryan Lippman of DPR, to a group of fourth and fifth-year architecture students from Cal Poly Pomona studying healthcare architecture.
We emphasized access to nature: the outdoor rehabilitation garden, green roof physical therapy terrace, green roof staff terrace, and programming of patient views towards the foothills. We also spoke about active and passive daylighting strategies: automated light monitor louvers, integral-louver glass for borrowed natural light into ORs, and programming of public spaces towards the south under deep, cantilevered canopies. Finally, we showed them strategies for child comfort and distraction: color changing lights in the clean corridor, the light court play area in surgery waiting, and garden themed supergraphics.
These were features incorporated into this facility in a pursuit of patient, staff, and public well-being. And there is no organization more deserving of this design service than the Shriners Hospitals For Children, dedicated to the charitable care of children from all walks of life, regardless of race, color, creed, sex, sect, disability, national origin, or ability to pay.
For more information, visit: Shriners Hospitals for Children