Author Archives: Lindsey Mcintyre

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: West Harrison 2015 Design Is…Award Global Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms of Global Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Suzen Heeley from Ewing Cole addresses the design process for MSK in West Harrison, NY.

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Describe this project in one word.

Serenity

How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?

A patient relayed the following to us regarding her experience at this facility:

Newly diagnosed with cancer, a woman who happens to be an interior designer, chose to go to our new regional center located near her home.  Understandably, she felt anxious, nervous and stressed about her first visit and did not know what to expect.  Upon walking into the lobby, her nerves calmed and she felt less anxious seeing the design of the space.  She told us that the colors, finishes and furniture made her feel secure about being at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center…that she knew she was in the right place.  For if MSK cared enough to create such a wonderful space, it was an organization that truly cared about her as a person and as a patient.  And she was pleased to see pendant light fixtures she recognized from her design work!

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Design is a process. Explain your journey.

At first glance, it was a challenge to see beyond the dated brick and metal panel building to envision what is now MSK West Harrison.  Once our design team recovered from the shock of being handed such a challenge, they recognized the location offered great potential to become our latest MSK outpatient facility, transforming an existing 1950’s office building into a 114,000 square foot, contemporary cancer center. No detail was overlooked in crafting a transformational patient experience within a sustainable, green building environment.  The design features of this intuitive, serene space work to maximize patient comfort and reduce anxiety, while providing the most advanced clinical care.  The patient is the focus forevery design journey we take and pushing our design consultants beyond their comfort zones to create the right design is our mission.  We are the #1 cancer center in the U.S. and our patient environments should reflect this in every way.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

  1. Leave your fears at the door and push yourselves way beyond your comfort zone…forget status quo.
  2. Put yourself in the patient’s shoes and see the space and experience through their eyes.
  3. Separate yourself from the pack…there are many designers out there and Owners look for what distinguishes you from the rest.
  4. Never say “never”…there’s always a better solution out there.
  5. Don’t recycle design ideas you’ve created for another healthcare organization; each project is a new opportunity for you to reach new heights.

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Monash International Bachelor of Business City Campus a 2015 Design Is…Award Global Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms of Global Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Natalie Boston from Jackson Clements Burrows addresses the design process for Monash International Bachelor of Business City Campus in Melbourne, Australia.

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Describe this project in one word.

Connectivity.

Design is a process. Explain your journey.

The original site had evolved via the ad-hoc connection of five separate buildings into a 3200 sqm single floor plate spanning an entire city block. The outcome was a large floor plate with very little natural light, disjointed planning and difficult wayfinding.

Our key objective was to enable the planning and design of the college to facilitate a level of interaction within the college community that would lead to a strong and cohesive student cohort. Our journey commenced as a highly collaborative process in which the idea for an internal urban campus was developed to meet Monash’s vision of a design solution that would explore and challenge the preconceptions of traditional tertiary teaching spaces.  Our planning strategy which embraced the key principles of Connection, Experience, Diversity, Journey, Engagement and Choice.

Following these key principals, we proceeded to forge cross-campus connections via a primary pathway that connected and linked the entire floorplate.

The result is a unique urban campus that offers a balance of sophistication and fun in a flexible functional environment that complements Monash’s vision of a visionary design solution for the International Bachelor of Business.

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?

The brief called for a diverse facility that would allow teaching and learning to occur in an innovative and flexible way, to support a ‘student-centered’ pedagogy of active learning.

A variety of informal & more structured learning spaces were pivotal to a successful design, providing the users choice.

Enabling both independent learning and collaborative group work, both formally and informally to encourage knowledge sharing and spontaneous exchanges.

Bookable ‘formal classroom’ spaces are available in varying sizes, rich in AV and designed to accommodate both collaborative group work & AV centric information delivery modes, including two large 70-80ppl flat floored Lectorial spaces, provide choice and options for lecturers and students alike to choose the right format space for the specific task to be undertaken, be that a lecture, flip-classroom workshop or discussion group.

The final result provides the following;

  • Space planning with a hierarchy of ‘campus’ connections to form the basis of a collegiate cohort.
  • A spatial solution informed by the urban context, providing an aspirational ‘inner-city’ experience, enhanced by planning that encourages ‘travel’ and spontaneous interaction.
  • A vibrant environment conducive to networking that encourages peer to peer interaction
  • Classrooms, each with a unique identity, that can be easily reconfigured to suit different teaching styles and disciplines
  • A variety of convivial communal and individual break out spaces, providing choice and opportunity to study or socialise between classes, promoting a ‘sticky’ campus.
  • An easy interface between the teachers and students to encourage discussion and interaction.

CARPET

We searched for a flooring product that could work harmoniously with both the planning and the design requirement for diverse spaces, each possessing a unique identity across a wide spectrum, from subtle sophistication to stimulating and vibrant.

The interlocking and non-linear nature of the Hexagon range was ideal, for a number of reasons, including;

  • to control the flow and pattern of the carpet and colour in any direction, particularly important in reinforcing the circulation and connectivity of the meandering primary pathway.
  • playing with pattern and colour allowed us to blur the thresholds between spaces, which reinforced their flexible and free flowing nature.
  • designed layout so colour ‘flowed’ across room thresholds and into the primary pathway; this identified rooms from a distance and assisted in intuitive wayfinding
  • Each learning space was prescribed a distinct colour, as part of the desire for theses spaces to feel different. The choice of different tones of the same colour, allowed us to colour-block rooms and create an intensity at the centre of the room that dissipated towards the rooms perimeter.

The Hexagon carpet tile significantly contributed to this project’s success outcome by supporting a strong design concept through the product’s innovative form and unparalleled flexibility.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

In a fast paced, accelerated programme project where the client brief is not fully developed, it is critical to produce a return brief for client sign off to capture and describe your best understanding of the clients aspirations, and in doing so become a valuable brief development tool & tracker.

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Santiago School of Rock a 2015 Design Is…Award Global Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms of Global Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Enrique Gonzalez Barrenechea from EGBARQ addresses the design process for School of Rock in Santiago Chile.

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Describe this project in one word.

Roquero (closest translation:  rocky – like mountainous terrain)

How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?

We focus design around experiences, how users live and how we can enhance, exalt it, feel and transmit. Santiago School of Rock is an experience of how music lessons and rehearsals can be experienced in different environments. Each room has an educational purpose. We worked with large image formats representing the different styles, classes and celebrities to help convey ‘rock’ in the classroom. Students are joyful regarding all aspects of the school – they don’t want to leave, they feel they are part of it. With a good design, the user wants to stay within the experience. Supporting the success of this institution, the school is listed second in enrollment world wide.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey.

The start of the design process has different stages. The first is to establish the real needs of the program. Second, determine how they interact with each other.  This is followed by looking at the technical requirements,  and finally, identifying the resources you have to set up the project. When all of these things are clarified, you open the door to the intuition and interpretation of these goals – and start designing. After a final review of all parts again –  and then of the design, there is a period of back-and-forth – always increasing the quality of the design and to balance of all the inputs. We support our work with 3d images, models, sketchs, drawings, schemes, samples of finishing materials. We are obsessive.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

Before advocating completely to the design of the expression of the project, make sure all technical aspects are in line. If  designing a kitchen, you would first make sure the user will be able to properly cook within this space.

Listen to the client, he knows his needs better than you do.

Allow others to participate in the design process. It´s always good to have the collaboration of others.

No matter the budget you have for the project, there are always ways to be creative. Review the elements and don’t overlook anything. There always ways to improve the design.

Practice coherence. All parts must add up to the major design. The language can be the same but not the expression.

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Showroom Multicarpet Rollux is a 2015 Design Is…Award Global Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Global winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Maite Bartolomé from + Architects addresses the design process for Showroom Multicarpet Rollux in Santiago, Chile.

Describe this project in one word.

Showcase

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?

The design is based on  Exhibition Support Elements that characterize the interior space, so the relationship between the visitor and the showcased products becomes fluid and interactive, becoming part of the natural use of the space.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey.

The Multicarpet Rollux showroom gathers sales and product specification offices, and exhibition spaces for both companies. The commission emphasized from the outset that the work and exhibition spaces were integrated, seeking a close relationship with the client, and transmitting the intention of Rollux and Multicarpet of supporting architects find the right materials and solutions for each project, in a joint work similar to an architecture studio.

With this starting point, the design of the Showroom integrates materials and products from both companies as a natural solution to the main functional and climatic requirements of the building, and not as exhibited elements in isolation. The design focuses on two main elements:

1)   A large wooden shelving system located in the center of the building, associated to the vertical circulation of the Showroom, will serve as a reference library for catalogs that provide insight into the multiple lines of Multicarpet flooring. This shelving system has a second technical function, as it hides HVAC equipment and serves as horizontal and vertical shaft for building facilities.

2)    A metal perimeter rail and facade profiles that support the various lines of Interior and Exterior Rollux Curtains, along all glass facades of the building, allowing to control the optimal natural lighting in workspaces and characterize the exterior facades.

The architecture of the building focuses on the solution of the details of these two elements, simple solutions are sought for a clean project that transmits the quality of the materials displayed.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

The importance of the flexibility and adaptability of the building.  The building should remain as a neutral background for the exhibited products, so it can evolve through time, allowing changes on use and function, not becoming obsolete.
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UCSF Medical Center a 2015 Design Is…Award Market Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Market-Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Trisha Clark addresses the design process for UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay Benioff Children’s Hospital in San Francisco, CA.

Describe this project in one word. One-for-all!

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?This new children’s hospital activates the imagination and engages children’s in joyful activity.  Colorful and interactive architecture, sculptures and imagery provides a positive environment for patients alleviating some of the discomfort and providing inspiration along their path to recovery.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey. 

Working together side-by-side in a truly collaborative environment like the big room, over a long period of time significantly changed the way our designers integrated with the client and we became them and they became us, sharing each other’s concerns and passion for creativity.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?

It takes a great deal of time and patience in working with your client to reach the optimal design solution.  There really is no one single solution and often reiteration of design is required.

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