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The new Golisano Children's Hospital sought design that would be both engaging and comforting to the patients and families that receive care in this state of the art facility. Certain unique challenges exist in designing for pediatric healthcare, such as ensuring that the design is something patients can relate to, isn't reminiscent of the negative aspects of their stay, provides intellectual and playful stimulation, reflects the diversity of the community and is engaging to patients of varying age levels. Additionally, the signage, wayfinding, theming and interactive elements need to support and or enhance the functional needs of a hospital, both for doctors and other healthcare providers and for patients, families and visitors as well.
The distinct surroundings of Upstate New York inspired ArtHouse's overall design concept, with six of the eight levels featuring a different landscape: lake, meadow, glen, garden, park and city. Deliberately intended for hands-on fun, the design elements feature round, child-friendly objects; safe, durable materials; and age-appropriate, engaging activities—while functioning to help visitors navigate the different levels and areas of the hospital through a comprehensive and intuitive wayfinding and signage program. To reduce stress and anxiety during patients' stays, ArtHouse created a warm, inviting and comfortable environment through playful distractions mixed with quiet areas.
Highlights of ArtHouse Design's custom theming, wayfinding and donor signageprogram for Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong Memorial Hospital include:• a life-size, Lite Brite-style activity wall• dioramas with mini, hand-painted trains• turn-and-crank automatas and interactive, kinetic games embedded in thewalls• a life-size puzzle• a word-search game fabricated with etched and painted wood• sound modules on occupiable walls for each themed level—frogs ribbit, bubblespop, cars honk and more• a walk-off mat with floor graphics for tumbling and gymnastics• back-lit, floor-to-ceiling graphics and photographic murals• a nursery-themed NICU• illuminated nurses' station desks with seamless panels of corian (elegant, whitestone) and etched butterfly patterns• 5-foot-diameter graphic icons that identify the themed level in elevator lobbies• a color-changing glass "wave" graphic etched into sliding glass doors thatseparate GCH from the Strong Memorial Hospital Lobby• comprehensive signage and wayfinding that changes color according to thefloor's primary color and theme• multiple donor walls recognizing those who made the hospital possible in abright spectrum of color• donor recognition installations featuring elegant dimensional type
ArtHouse also provided all services relating to messages, location plans,construction administration, samples approval and team coordination.
It is well documented that thoughtful design and artful environments both enhance and facilitate the healing process. The new Golisano Children's Hospital is making a positive impact on the lives of over 85,000 children and their families in the Finger Lakes region and across the country every year.