HDR Receives Two National AIA Healthcare Design Awards
The American Institute of Architects Academy of Architecture for Health recently announced its 2020 Healthcare Design Award recipients. Two of the eight projects recognized — Shirley Ryan AbilityLab and Saving Main Street: Haxtun, Colorado — were designed by HDR.
Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
Rated the top destination for rehabilitation of some of the most severe and complex conditions that adults and young people face, the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in Chicago, Illinois is the first translational research hospital where clinicians, scientists, and innovators work hand-in-hand around the clock in flexible spaces that surround their patients. Designed by HDR|Gensler, in association with Clive Wilkinson Architects and EGG Studio, the facility evokes an atmosphere of optimism and hope. Bright colors and bold graphics can be found throughout, and curved walls allow for natural and “frictionless” movement, particularly for those who use wheelchairs.
In recognizing this project, the jury commented: "This is a vibrant, affirming space for healing and recovery ... It is interesting how they integrated modalities like the connecting stair into therapy. The program works well for the client goals, and the patient room has a nice, simple aesthetic. The façade fits into the urban skyline, but when you enter, the identity of the building is expressed. They broke up a typical urban high-rise in an atypical way.”
Saving Main Street: Haxtun, CO
The Saving Main Street project, a partnership between HDR, Haxtun Hospital District, and Phillips County Economic Development, explores how clever interventions can address health and economics while fostering positive, supportive environments that can improve the quality of life and access to care in rural towns across the country. As a mixed-use destination with health and wellness at the forefront, this plan hopes to generate the population density necessary to provoke an enlivened town center. All of the necessary programs would operate in support of one another rather than as stand-alone elements that prompt sprawl and redundancy.
“This thought-provoking research idea draws attention to the plight of health care in rural contexts and demonstrates what hospitals and small towns could do for each other,” noted the jury. “By integrating health care into a mixed-use context with other building types, they promote wellness and community. This is a starting point for a dialogue around how health care and wellness can be the backbone of a community.”