Highly technical program with innovative opportunity
The College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Colorado State University is making plans to build a new veterinary teaching hospital filled with state-of-the-art medical equipment that supports its world-renowned research. The program graduates about 140 veterinarians each year, and for the past twenty years has been ranked among the top three veterinary teaching programs in the country. The existing campus is known for its expertise in animal reproduction and biotechnology, cancer biology, infectious disease and neurobiology studies. Since the current teaching hospital’s construction in 1979, the growing program is desperately in need of an updated facility to continue their innovative operation and grow their legacy.
The primary goal of this project was to provide the new Veterinary Teaching Hospital with a collaborative working environment that can be translated easily into collaborative learning experiences for the students. This will, in turn, create a vibrant mixture of training, teaching, and producing that can be encouraged through an architecture of fluidity, opening up to advocate and embrace this energy and exchange of information.
After understanding this energy, the concept formed around capturing the transfer of knowledge: when staff administer treatment to their equine patients, when that treatment is gleamed from bright young students, and when that procedure and research is broadcasted to the larger medical community across the country. The opportunity presented itself through an architectural intervention; a system likened to a fabric that could thread together an enclosure based around a technically challenging program with strict adjacency requirements.
The solution was to create a system of bays to help organize the complexities, arrange the functions into core relationships, and bisect the bays with corridors to create an open transfer of people and patients, as well as a collaborative and fluid movement through the hospital, while not negatively impacting the cross-contamination and sterile requirements of a critical care facility.