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University of Colorado Health, Poudre Valley Hospital Outpatient Cancer Center, Harmony Campus: Fort Collins Colo.

Submitted by: Heery International Inc. Denver

Given the ever-increasing volume of northern Colorado patients, elevated cancer awareness, and the desire to continue being one of the regions providers of proactive, advanced cancer treatment care, the University of Colorado Health (UCH) wanted to take action. UCH engaged Heery Design to deliver design services for the renovation and expansion of the Poudre Valley Hospital Outpatient Cancer Center. The $10.7 million, 44,390-square-foot project was built in three phases, allowing the project to remain fully operational throughout construction.

Paramount to the project was the critical design process that occurred before Phase 2. The process began with an intensive and interactive one-week Lean 2P work session, with input from UCH stakeholders, cancer survivors, the design team, and the construction manager/general contractor. After the meeting, the Patient Survivory Council confirmed, "Our wish list became your to-do list." With several viewpoints coming together in real time, the all-inclusive planning allowed Heery to move quicker through the planning, concept design, and schematic design phases. Over 45 days of back and forth consensus building was cut out of the overall design schedule, and during the 2P session Heery was able to evaluate design, construction, and schedule situations that resulted in a well-organized project process. All of this saved UCH design and construction dollars that were used toward furthering patient care or other future project needs. "To meet the site constraints, project deadlines, and UCH's desire to remain open throughout construction, our Lean 2P process involved all stakeholders," says Heery Vice President Mark Johnson, who oversaw the project. "We worked 'right on the wall' with all of the users, and at the end of the five days, the plan and design direction was set ... it really never changed moving forward. The result was a project delivered for a fraction of the cost of building new."

"A critical component of design is the lobby; it's wide and expansive with a sweeping staircase to the second floor. Gone are the harsh angles found in most medical buildings; walls have rounded edges, ceilings are soft and curved. There are no rectangular, hard edges or corners; it's intentionally unlike any other lobby on the Harmony campus," says JoAnn Lovins, service line director for oncology at UCH. "We wanted to make it soft and warm and welcoming to diminish the anxiety and distress that people feel when they first come in. It feels like this might be an okay, safe place to start." The glass curtain wall that faces the existing wing has colored asymmetrical panes, providing a spiritual feel. The other lobby glass curtain wall facing the healing garden gives visitors a grand view of the campus's mature landscaping and mountain range beyond.

"At the second-level infusion area, we projected and cantilevered a portion of the grand room toward the west," states Mark Johnson. "This not only allowed for more infusion positions within the department for less cost, but also created an exterior identity for the center." The infusion area provides a comfortable space for chemotherapy and other infusion-based treatments. Many infusion chairs are in family-oriented areas, while open individual spaces and private rooms are available around the room's perimeter. A pair of symmetrical balconies provides patients and families an exterior area away from treatment. Large glass windows on all three sides flood the infusion area with natural light and provide panoramic views.

UCH's and Heery's goals aligned from the very beginning--to create a warm and welcoming environment for cancer patients and their loved ones that also is clinically and operationally efficient. Today, the center continues to be a facility providing advanced cancer treatment in the region while having a positive, impact on the surrounding community.

Project category: Project in progress

Chief administrator: JoAnn Lovins, senior director, oncology service line

Film: Heery International Inc.,

Design team: Mark Johnson, principal-in-charge, lead designer and planner; Eric Eschenbrenner, project architect (Heery International Inc.); MEP engineering (BCER Engineering); interior design (Gallun Snow)

Photography: [c] Bob Soman Photography

Total building area (sq. ft.): 32,150 (new); 12,240 (renovation)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $260 (new); $193 (renovation)

Total construction cost (excluding land): $8.3 million (new); $2.4 million (renovation)

Completed: August 2015
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Title Annotation:CANCER CENTER
Publication:Healthcare Design
Date:Sep 1, 2015
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