PROJECT CATEGORY Single Space or Feature (completed January 2000)

CHIEF ADMINISTRATOR Ton Joosten, GE Medical Systems Canada, (905) 567-2177

FIRM Montgomery Sisam Architects, Inc., (416) 364-8079

DESIGN TEAM Robert Davies, Principal; Martin Dolan, Associate; Amin Ebrahim

PHOTOGRAPHY Ed White

RENDERING Chris Burbidge

BED CAPACITY N/A

TOTAL BUILDING AREA (SQ. FT.) 1,800

TOTAL LAND AREA N/A

TOTAL COST Not released


In collaboration with General Electric Medical Systems Canada (GEMS), our architectural firm has designed more than 20 Medical Imaging Equipment sites in health centers across Canada.

When healthcare providers procure medical imaging technologies from GEMS, they often purchase a complete design and construction package. Rather than simply supplying the machine and installing it in an architecturally indifferent space, the goal of GEMS is to give staff and patients added value in the form of good design.

One focus of the design is to ensure that the function surrounding the use of the imaging equipment occurs efficiently. Patient and staff work flow and access to supporting equipment are essential components of the planning exercise.

Another focus of the design is to consider patients' physical and psychological needs. Patients using the equipment might be in a state of heightened stress. With the delicate use of form, color, proportion and materials, the rooms are designed to alleviate stress and provide a comforting counterpoint to the machine. The nature of the equipment can also be disconcerting, particularly for those susceptible to claustrophobia. Daylight is an important feature used to counteract such feelings. Where space permits, as in the Saint John Regional MRi Centre, clerestory windows bring in light and add extra height to the room. At the Western Canada MRi Centre, a large translucent window is set parallel to the equipment. Privacy is maintained from the street beyond by “Shoji”-type screens of maple frames and sandblasted glass. These screens also hide the black metal mesh of the radiofrequency shield

.

The working environment is kept calm and visually uncluttered. Bookmatched maple cabinets accommodate supporting equipment and other medical paraphernalia.