Children’s Wisconsin has undertaken a major redevelopment of their Milwaukee Campus, including this six-story addition designed for vertical expansion housing, multidisciplinary ambulatory specialties, surgery prep and recovery, a multi-phased renovation of the existing surgical platform, a Child Life Center, and the Apple a Day Cafe. The building addition connects directly to the existing Inpatient Tower, as well as the existing Ambulatory Clinics Building.
Our role as the Interior Designer was to develop the overall concept for the interior design of Children’s Wisconsin new addition. The goal was to capture a broad base that represented the demographics and diversity of the patients the hospital serves. Through focus groups with parents and the client’s WOW team, the building design was developed around a theme of Wisconsin Stories. Research influenced different stories on each floor that represented elements from throughout the state, such as care and hope, culture and arts, seasons, activities, and farming/industry.
At the same time this project was beginning design, we were retained to revamp and refresh the Interior Finish and Furniture Standards and apply them on this project. The client wanted to simplify their current standards and create a fresh, clean approach to materials, colors, and how they were to be applied. The new building was to be a transition between old and new.
Furniture selections and materials were part of the re-evaluation of standards. Upholstery selections were made, some to be more universal for the entire campus, but some very specific to each color palette. Pops of color throughout the project come from the furniture pieces, artwork, and environmental graphics as well as the application of the various paint colors. All materials were evaluated for durability, maintenance, warranty, safety and function before they were applied to the standards of this project.
Wayfinding was critical as the campus was growing and this approach helped provide organization to the multi-building campus. The integration of environmental graphics and art were key to support and further reinforce that concept. Graphics were created to enhance patient experience, feature elements from each story and assist with patient engagement. It provides a “Family Centered Care” feel, with efficiency in flow and operation. It reduces the physiological stress families are dealing with on a daily basis. The interactive features in the lobby provide a positive distraction for the children as they are passing through.