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Reference Desk February 2012

International Interior Design Association Honors University of Guelph Healthcare Center

    Primary Animal Healthcare Center Awarded “Best of the Best” by IIDA

    ATLANTA, Georgia, February 28, 2012—The Primary Animal Healthcare Centre at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada was awarded a Best of the Best (BOB) Award in the healthcare category by the International Interior Design Association (IIDA) at a ceremony held on February 23, 2012.  The project was up against many notable projects including many human healthcare projects.

    As the oldest Veterinary College in North America, the Ontario Veterinary College has been an innovator in veterinary education since its inception. This new center combines diagnostic, treatment, and clinical spaces similar to a local veterinarian, but with enlarged spaces and added areas for teaching new veterinarians. The key concept for the design centered around turning veterinary medicine inside out by allowing students to learn in three distinct ways—studying a concept or procedure, observing someone doing the procedure, and finally, demonstrating that they have achieved a competency in doing the procedure themselves. 

    U Guelph lobby

    The LEED Certified Primary Animal Healthcare Centre, completed in 2010, is structured to enhance flow, maximize public and private spaces, and incorporate added space to integrate students into an environment that parallels private practice. The center encompasses traditional veterinary practice spaces including waiting/exam rooms, treatment, surgery, radiology, isolation, and animal housing, as well as innovative cutting edge program spaces including a pool and underwater treadmill for rehabilitation, endowed care, and dentistry, all emerging trends in veterinary medicine. 

    The design supports the innovative curriculum by the logical progression of spaces with a high degree of transparency to facilitate the learning/teaching experience. The plan flows from a public lobby and conference space through shared exam and diagnostic spaces into more secluded treatment and procedure spaces. A centrally located “rounds room” looks into the heart of the hospital, electronically allowing students to see into every space in the hospital. Endowed Care provides an environment where animals can live out their lives after their owner's death in a space tailored to their physical and emotional needs. Indoor playground areas, skylights, private suites, rehabilitation pool, dry exercise areas, and bathing/grooming amenities supplement the housing and exterior spaces.

    About FWAJDB Architects
    From teaching hospitals and highly complex laboratories to classroom and medical education support facilities, FWAJDB’s skilled team of architects have established the reputation as the “go to” architectural firm in the United States.  With specialized expertise in the latest advances in digital technology, biotechnology, diagnostic laboratories, equine facilities, food/animal safety and the promotion of public health, FWAJDB successfully monitors the pulse of factors driving future directives in the industry. With more than seventy completed high profile projects on more than 25 campuses in their portfolio. FWAJDB’s team of designers has provided expertise for many of the nation’s leading schools of veterinary medicine, teaching hospitals, laboratories, clinics and research and technology centers throughout the U.S. and abroad.

    Source: FWAJDB Architects

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