Akron Children's Hospital Redesign
Redesigning Akron Children's Hospital in Ravenna, OH
This project is designed as a conceptual building to introduce novel innovations to the atmosphere of a hospital. The pediatric setting and the fact that no budget limit was defined for construction allowed us to fantasize about a clinic designed to be a joyful place, not just an enclosed structure associated with pain and illnesses. It is designed to elevate the level of imagination for the design of a clinic. The primary concept was the use of several courtyards in a healthcare setting as a solution to introduce natural lighting. The secondary idea was to design an inclusive space for children, adolescents, and adults. The secondary concept led to the execution of a roof garden on top of the clinic’s traditional spaces to be an exciting area for adults and to satisfy children’s curiosity.
Exam Rooms: Natural Light
All the exam rooms have two windows to bring natural light inside. The exam area is separated from the caregiver’s area to make the children feel special once they enter the exam area and remedy their anxiety. The exam chair is located close to the window, so they stay connected to the outside world. If they need to lie down, a mirror on the ceiling will depict the surroundings and maintain their awareness of the room. Sufficient cabinet space, as well as a sink, is provided for the physician. Walls have illustrations on them, and a TV will allow for endless opportunities for the physician to elucidate matters or to entertain people in the room. Bright saturated colors bring a sense of prosperity and exhilaration.
Exam Rooms: Privacy
Exam room pod layouts are around several courtyards scattered through the floor plan to allow each exam room’s two windows and provide a pleasant view outside of them. Since the exam rooms are located next to each other, pods of exam rooms could see through the adjacent exam rooms’ windows ending up in compromised privacy. To solve this problem, windows have a height difference, not letting people see other rooms easily. The foliage will also add a layer of complexity to block windows. Ever-green plants are suggested to be used to maintain aesthetics and privacy matters during the winters.
Once families enter the facility, they have multiple choices on how to spend their time waiting for their visit. First, they can take a seat in the lobby. Second, they can let their children play in the play area where there are multiple playing choices, including a pit and drawing desks. The registration area is able to overlook the children if needed to ensure their safety, and parents can site nearby. Third, they can explore the roof garden, which is explained on the next page.
Once families enter the facility, they have multiple choices on how to spend their time waiting for their visit. First, they can take a seat in the lobby. Second, they can let their children play in the play area where there are multiple choices for playing including a pit and drawing desks. The registration area is able to overlook the children if needed to ensure their safety and parents can site nearby. Third, they can explore the roof garden which is explained in the next page.
The roof garden is a hybrid of waiting and play area. The goal was to add a layer of excitement to the building for the children. It is a space to explore. With views of the courtyards and with a playground in the middle, it is designed to be a safe place to roam around. Visitors can go up there while they are waiting, or they can drop by before leaving the facility. One issue that arose was people who stood close to the parapets could see into the exam rooms around the courtyards; to remedy that, small gardens are positioned around the courtyards to limit the viewing angle.
Disclaimer: This project was designed as an academic exercise to develop design skills and was not affiliated with any entity