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Events 

Venice/Santa Monica Modern Home Tour
May 3, 2014

The Venice/Santa Monica Modern Home Tour gives L.A. residents a chance to explore and view some of the greatest examples of modern architecture right in their own area, via self-guided driving tour. Attendees learn from homeowners what it's like to live in a modern home and find out where the architects got their inspiration - directly from the architects themselves. The tour is self-guided and self-driven, allowing guests to explore these modern treasures at their own pace.

RICSSummit of the Americas Toronto 2014

May 4-6, 2014
RICS Summit of the Americas 2014 is for any real estate professional looking to draw from timely, in-depth market knowledge that will be shared by local and international experts in the land, property and construction sectors. The summit will provide an excellent opportunity to connect with top professionals from around the world and engage in educational seminars and premier discussion forums.

Heath Open Studio Events
May 9–11
The traditional Spring event, where Heath opens the doors to the factory and studio so visitors can explore both Heath's history, as well as current projects and collections, will be held at the company's San Franciso, Sausalito and Los Angeles locations.

Sonoma Living: Home Tours
May 10, 2014
AIA San Francisco and AIA Redwood Empire are excited to announce Sonoma Living: Home Tours, a new home tours program for 2014. Sonoma Living will showcase a wide variety of architectural styles, neighborhoods, and residences—all from the architect's point of view. The program provides design enthusiasts and the general public with an inside look into the world of distinctive residences in Sonoma county. Tour participants have the opportunity to see some of the area's latest residential projects from the inside out, meet design teams, explore housing trends, and discover design solutions that inspire unique Sonoma living.

de LaB Presents an Eastside Home Tour: Architects at Home
May 10, 2014
De LaB presents its second annual Eastside home tour, “Architects at Home,” on May 10th from 12:00-4:00 p.m. The popular tour will explore homes designed and built by architects for their own families. A sense of experimentation, playfulness, inspiration, and a creative approach to budget constraints pervade these homes.

The Venice Art Walk
May 18, 2014
The proud tradition of artists and volunteers providing health care to their neighbors in need and the celebration of Venice’s vibrant artistic culture continues today. This event is free and open to the public and features a highly anticipated 350 piece art auction, live entertainment, and an impressive lineup of gourmet food trucks. Participants can purchase tickets to highly regarded Architecture Tours that held throughout the year and/or view exclusive art studios that will be featured on the day of Venice Art Walk & Auctions.

Design for Social Impact
May 25–August 3, 2014
Based on the idea that design is a way of looking at the world with an eye for changing it, the Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA) presents Design for Social Impact, an original exhibition offering a look at how designers, engineers, students, professors, architects and social entrepreneurs use design to solve the problems of the 21st century.

Celebrate: Groundswell
June 28, 2014
A+D Architecture and Design Museum > Los Angeles (A+D) celebrates its 13th year of cutting edge exhibitions and progressive architecture and design programs with its annual gala and fundraiser.

 

Competitions

Deadline: April 25
Call for Entries (Student Awards) 
ASLA

Deadline: May 18
Imagine Hillandale
Imagine Hillandale

Deadline: June 1 
AIA|LA 2014 Design Awards Program Registration 
AIA|LA

Deadline: December 31
Kitchen Design Contest
Wolf and Sub-Zero 

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« Education: Public Interest Design Portland | Main | Showroom: How We Sit Now »
Monday
Jun172013

Case Study: Lee Brennan on Healthcare Innovation

The linear accelerator at The Doug + Nancy Barnhart Cancer Center at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center overlooks a garden, one of many innovative, patient-focused design decisions Lee Brennan and Cuningham Group incorporated into the facility's design. Image courtesy Cuningham Group. It seems like the simplest of ideas—improve the hospital experience for patients (and by extension their caregivers and loved ones) and create a constellation of favorable circumstances that can promote healing and reduce the stress and anxiety levels of all comers. As a brief look at modern medicine reveals, the reality has been very different. In his work at Cuningham Group’s healthcare studio, principal Lee Brennan has been thinking long and hard about just how to improve those experiences and, by extension, potentially improve outcomes.

A case in point is Brennan and the San Diego team’s recent work on The Doug + Nancy Barnhart Cancer Center at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center in San Diego, where, Brennan says, “every measure was taken to improve the patient experience from the moment of arrival.” To do this, Wayne Hunter and Phillip Soule, of Cuningham Group, led groups of facility leadership and healthcare professionals in intensive, collaborative work sessions to provide feedback on what they liked—and disliked—about the existing facility. On other projects Brennan noted they have used a patient advisory group. These methods allow them to incorporate that feedback. The result is state-of-the-art facilities that keeps the human factor in sight.

At the center, gardens and fountains appear throughout, even in the linear accelerator vault, “where the patient faces a floor-to-ceiling wall of windows that provide daylight and open directly on to a view of an outside garden,” notes Brennan. “The machine itself was turned 180 degrees from its typical orientation to hide the gantry, enabling it to serve rather than intimidate the patient.” Entrances too are designed to be residential-scale and unintimidating; returning patients also have their own more, private entrance. Other innovations include an entire floor outfitted with an air purification system allowing patients facing long hospital stays a chance at a more normal existence. 

Though Brennan’s focus is squarely on the patient, he says, “Too often medical designers get caught up pleasing the patient, who is essentially the customer. But staff is there every day. So we create what we call 'offstage' spaces where they can get access to natural light: We cut courtyards into the lockers and lounge areas and even bring daylighting into the surgical corridors when possible.”

Improving the experiences of patients and staff may just be the tip of the iceberg when comes to rethinking the healthcare experience more generally—something Brennan and Cuningham Group, recently joined by NTD Healthcare in a strategic expansion, are primed to do. For Brennan, the creation of wellness districts could improve the quality of life for the community as a whole. As he sees it, rather than creating multi-hospital districts in urban areas (think Boston, for example), Brennan sees the promise of areas that broadly promote health and well being for patients, potential patients and staff alike. It would mean developing close-by, affordable housing for staff, enticing grocery stores and restaurants into the area, building athletic facilities and other facilities that get people moving. “The hospital can be instigator of change,” says Brennan. “It’s an idea that can be taken anywhere, even rural areas with a bit of a modification—you don't need five giant hospitals, just an anchor tenant in a larger conversation.” 

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