Project category: New construction (completed April 2005)

Chief administrator: Robert Murphy, Chief Administrator and COO, (253) 503-2545

Firm: CollinsWoerman, (206) 245-2097

Design team: Phil Giuntoli, Principal-in-Charge; Brenda Ball, Interior Designer; Cary Guenther, Project Architect

Photography: Benjamin Benschneider

Total building area (sq. ft.): 20,711

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $111

Total construction cost (excluding land): $2,300,000

The project for Digestive Health Specialists' Tacoma clinic consisted of four tenant improvement projects totaling 20,711 square feet at South Cedar Medical Office Building Phase 2, including a full-floor endoscopy center, infusion center, laboratory remodel, and administrative offices on a separate floor. The centerpiece of the design was the endoscopy center.

The medical group understood the anxiety faced by their patient population. While endoscopic procedures are relatively risk-free, for many people the idea of the experience causes considerable trepidation. Because of this, the practice wanted to create an environment that immediately put patients at ease in a truly noninstitutional environment while maintaining an efficiently organized design.

CollinsWoerman used a Hollywood theme throughout the facility: Large-scale photographs, memorabilia, and materials were combined to glamorize the space and set the tone. Ample space was provided to circulate easily and intuitively throughout the facility without the usual claustrophobic feel of these centers. The design demonstrates the understanding that patient dignity and privacy are of utmost importance by including a private toilet in each pre-op room. Consideration to patient escorts was given by creating a continuously running silent film “theater” adjacent to the main waiting room.

Designed around a unique theme, this endoscopy center has met both of its objectives by providing an efficient and profitable facility within a patient-friendly atmosphere.