©2006 Ruggero Vanni

Inset: Tobin+Parnes Design Enterprises

©2006 Ruggero Vanni
Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation (PJI) provides short- and long-term geriatric, outpatient, and community services. The existing Lobby featured exposed concrete walls, waffle-slab ceilings, and dark brick floors. The space felt institutional with inadequate lighting and an underused Back Lobby area.

PJI envisioned an environment that respected residents' quality of life and PJI's culturally enriched programs and humanistic vision. PJI desired a warm, noninstitutional environment that would lift spirits and encourage social interaction.

The reception desk was relocated and centered on the entry vestibule to provide better visual security control, and it was enlarged for expanded communication, emergency, safety, and security systems. The desk, constructed of cherry wood, was enhanced by a “floating” ceiling, emphasizing its function as an information center and creating intimacy. PJI's logo was integrated on a glass panel at the rear of the desk. An Information Wall was created for current activities and news announcements. New ceiling details included a perimeter soffit inlaid with wood panels and a raised-center cove ceiling finished in sky blue.

A Family Lounge was added in the Back Lobby to encourage residents and families to use these areas. An intimate environment was created by incorporating plaster ceiling-tile designs, a faux fireplace, a bow window, window treatment, wood cabinetry, soothing colors, and upholstered seating.

©2006 Ruggero Vanni

Tobin+Parnes Design Enterprises
A wood-framed storefront was designed for the Lobby Store. To invoke the feeling of a small-town shop, a copper roof was added, providing a destination with excitement and vitality.

Elements relating to nature were introduced. A salt water aquarium was installed at the intersection between the Lobby and Elevator Hall, providing a lively and colorful focal point.

In the Back Lobby, lounge seating was added, as was a “Nature Corner” with a wall-mounted water fountain surrounded by variegated slate, pebble stones, and plants, creating a soothing and peaceful water feature.

Lighting levels were increased using recessed, low-glare fluorescent fixtures lamped in incandescent-like color. Wall sconces were added to diversify the lighting and provide a residential quality. The goal was to meet the needs of the visually impaired, as well as to create a welcoming, uplifting environment.
©2006 Ruggero Vanni

©2006 Ruggero Vanni
Walls were covered with green-grass, cloth-like vinyl. Contrasting handrails and bumpers were added. Existing flooring was replaced with softly mottled porcelain tiles, chosen for durability, ease of maintenance, and moderate cost. Warm wood finishes and custom millwork details were introduced throughout for richness and warmth.

Project category: Remodel/Renovation (completed April 2006)

Chief administrator: Michael N. Rosenblut, President and CEO, (718) 289-2351

Firm: Tobin+Parnes Design Enterprises, (212) 462-4200

Design team: Carol R. Tobin, Principal; Robert M. Parnes, Principal; Akiko Yamada, Project Manager; Gerard Orozco, Senior Associate; Dorothy Dejkanovic, Associate (Tobin+Parnes Design Enterprises); Electrical Engineer (Atkinson, Koven, Feinberg, LLP)

Photography: ©2006 Ruggero Vanni; Tobin+Parnes Design Enterprises

Total building area (sq. ft.): 6,150

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $165

Total construction cost (excluding land): $1,015,185

©2006 Ruggero Vanni

©2006 Ruggero Vanni

©2006 Ruggero Vanni