Health Care And Design Excellence Can Coexist 

When I started working in architecture I remember a mentor telling me not to get involved with healthcare. The logic was that hospitals are generally large bland buildings where design is driven by too many factors that have nothing to do with making good buildings. This is part of the reason I’m so pleased about last week’s announcement that Bridgepoint Active Healtcare, a project I had the privilege of working on, has recieved a Governor General’s Award for Architcture. 

With this recognition and a recent AIA Award, Bridgepoint has joined an elite group of recent North American hospitals and health care facilities that are being recognized for their superior architecture. In the case of Bridgepoint, this means recognition that not only is the building beautiful but it’s design is in the service of patients. 

Thanks to the initial vision of Bridgepoint’s CEO, Marian Walsh, ideas about patient-centered design were carried throughout the project. Light, air, views, healthy interior spaces, and myriad other features all contribute to making a place where patients can really feel better. I’m very pleased the GG Awards’ distinguished jury saw this, and confirmed that Bridgepoint broke the blandness mold that so many healthcare buildings are cast from. 

Images below are from the GG Awards website.

Design is Disruptive

Good design is often about doing things in a completely different way than they’ve been done before. And when you’ve innovated and found a better way you really can’t go on doing things the way they’ve always been done. In this way, design is disruptive to the status quo. CBC and Matt Galloway have created a new series about brilliant Canadian designers and their work, called Disrupting Design, and I’m very pleased that a project I worked on, Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, is featured in episode 3. 

I think you’ll agree that the series is very well done, and makes a compelling case for design innovation. In episode 3, Greg Colucci and Marian Walsh talk about the patient centred design innovations that took place at Bridgepoint and how they have improved patient outcomes.

As is often the case with hospital architecture, the design team for Bridgepoint was extensive including multiple firms; KPMB, Stantec, Diamond Schmitt, and HDR made up the architectural team. The project has recieved many accolades for design excellence including from the American Institute of Architects, the Ontario Association of Architects, and others. 

The video is available here. Bridgepoint segment begins around minute 8.

 Images are stills from the CBC tv series Disrupting Design.  


Bridgepoint Active Healthcare Wins Brownie Award

Bridgepoint has won the Canadian Urban Institute’s ‘Brownie’ Award for brownfield redevelopment in the ‘ REBUILD Excellence in Project Development: Building Scale’ category.

The project team which included the editor of this blog and well known firms Stantec Architecture / KPMB Architects, HDR Architecture / Diamond Schmitt Architects was cited by the jury for the way it “… successfully integrates a former burial ground, a federal jail and a former isolation hospital to create a new community hospital that provides high quality visual and physical access to enhanced public realm.”

Bridgepoint is a LEED Registered building.

Bridgepoint Active Healthcare Receives Best of Canada Interiors Award

This new Toronto health care facility continues to attract attention from design juries and press alike. Canadian Interiors Magazine‘s jurors praised the project for features promoting recovery including a calming colour and materials palette, quiet meditative spaces.

Having personally participated as a member of the design team which included architects DSAI, HDR, KPMB, and Stantech, it is an honour to have been involved with this exemplary health care project where the interior was conceived of as a tool for enabling patients to recover and leave the facility as soon as possible.



Bridgepoint is a LEED NC Registered project.

Bridgepoint Active Healthcare Best of 2014

Bridgepoint Active Healthcare has been named by the people of Toronto Best Institutional or Commercial Building of 2014 by the PUG Awards.

These 10th annual awards asked Torontonians and others to vote on a field of 43 residential and commercial buildings at during the month of May this year.