Medical Construction & Design

MAY-JUN 2018

Medical Construction & Design (MCD) is the industry's leading source for news and information and reaches all disciplines involved in the healthcare construction and design process.

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MCDM AG.COM | M AY/ J U N E 2018 | Medical Construction & Design 55 predictable, stress-reducing and health-enhancing patient, visitor, provider — even com- munity experiences — by the simple act of making buildings and their interiors more easily seen, understood and navigable. Giving the clues and glimpses of what comes next that is af- forded by heightened transpar- ency enables and unlocks the higher abilities within us to reach further beyond the three dimensions and the knowable to new dimensions of discovery and understanding. Society benefi ts from the resultant openness and honesty. We are seeing life, activities and heal- ing in healthcare buildings at an unprecedented level. Rather than looking at healthcare architecture as a mere landmark or destination against the horizon announcing "treatment given here" as in the past, through tropes of transpar- ency we are able to see its tran- scendence into a place of hu- man engagement and gathering — perpetuating understanding and betterment of both personal and community health. It has become a place of multi-lateral interaction, where all parties can be participants and facilita- tors in the journey and quest for collective "well-being." Reaching new heights At the Uintah Basin Medical Center in Roosevelt, situated in the high-desert steppe in the southern shadows of Utah's highest yet oldest mountains, the Wasatch Range, a soaring glass canopy announces the ER entry at the west side of the hospital. The vibrant refrac- tion of light is a striking echo of the crystalline blue Starvation Reservoir encountered to the west of the city. The laminated glass, with a UV-resistant frost- ed interlayer, serves multiple missions: it is a strong wayfi nd- ing beacon to those seeking urgent care, shelters the drop- off area and bathes the entry and waiting area with natural light while blocking the sun's intense rays. It is accomplished by butt-glazing glass panels with structural silicon within a structural steel frame on two sides while letting the leading and rear edges soar and disap- pear into the sky. Similar glass tropes guide patients and visitors through a fully transparent vestibule, into a daylit reception and waiting experience where lighting set on sensors increases or decreas- es with the available natural light. Tidy glass registration and counseling areas allow staff full purview of the surroundings while giving needed privacy for confi dential interactions. The sharing of light and views beyond are also employed in the heart of the UBMC ER to allow for visibility and con- nectedness between staff and patients in exam and trauma rooms via the permeable staff work core. The limited "view- ing" strip at the amply glazed entries to exams is frosted with a translucent mylar fi lm. Lens of openness At the Jordan Valley Cancer Center in Utah — winner of The CARITAS Project's 2017 Generative Space Award and the fi rst comprehensive cancer center in the greater west Salt Lake valley — high-transparen- cy glass sets the inner workings of the center onto the stage, telegraphing the way for indi- vidual patients, as well as open- ing its arms to the community as a place of gathering. The center and its shared gathering spaces have been successful in bringing not only the spectrum of cancer support groups and activities within its glassy walls, but has expanded greatly into hosting city and fi re department meetings, as well as healthcare teams from all hospital departments. The dark and opaque stigma of cancer has been literally and metaphorically brought into the light with the generous use of glazing. The expanses of fl oating glass curtainwall with cantile- vered overhangs and deep fi ns serve the same plural duties of letting light and views to the nearby Oquirrh Mountains in while blocking the intense Utah summer sun. Infusion therapy patients perched comfortably above the "fray" on the soaring second fl oor are treated with these expansive views to the west and south to aid in their long and frequent treatment regimes. A two-level, double-sided fi replace forms a hearth for gathering in infusion. Due to the ultra-transparent glass that clads and frames it on both levels of the center, it presents a strong exterior and interior landmark element — a guiding lantern of warmth and light. At the entry level, the glazed fi replace opens to the living area and to its adjacent exterior patio and gardens, further pro- claiming the center's mission of "Preventing, Treating, and Thriving" via a lens of openness and empowerment. Similar glass expanses and partitions connect all patient destinations within the center, giving glimpses of what's com- ing next, as well as a rearward memory of where one has been — increasing confi dence and reducing stress. All separations that could be made permeable, transparent or translucent have been rendered so throughout the center. Consider the images sur- rounding this article and how the transparency and clarity of glass and glazing opens what were once barriers. Consider how glass and resins have become a lens of understanding that can cross boundaries. It is a material that defi es divisiveness yet guides and provides neces- sary separation with subtlety. These systems, paradoxically, also provide the visual and au- dio privacy needed without rob- bing us of the healthy aspects of connectedness and light so needed for the higher levels of health and well-being we seek. Nathan Murray, AIA, is design partner and vice president at TSA Architects. Y Above: Serving as both a billboard and a welcome lens to transparent cancer care, the deep-fi nned and thinly capped low-e, thermal curtainwall encasing the infusion therapy suite at Jordan Valley Cancer Center in Utah launches over the main entry. This negates the need for a separate entry canopy. The stair is clearly visible and accessible behind the glass line to the right, encouraging easy wayfi nding and daily steps to services above. Left: Soaring laminated glass with a frosted interlayer fuses with the sky while protecting and greeting patients at the entry to the emergency department at Uintah Basin Medical Center in Roosevelt, Utah. Whether sunlit by day or uplit by night, it is a glowing beacon of health that also maximizes light into and views from the curved curtainwalled reception and waiting areas below.

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