Downstate Medical Center is an academic medical center (hospital and seperate medical school) located in Brooklyn, NY. David Smotrich & Partners LLP and its team of subconsultants were retained to evaluate the existing Cafeteria/ Servery and generate three alternative design schemes. The report identified programmatic elements to be incorporated into the three schematic design proposals. The program was identified based on the analysis of information compiled from:
• User Group Interviews
• Online Survey
• Asbestos Abatement Survey
• Ventilation Test Report
•Architectural and MEP survey of the spaces.
With these unique guidelines, DSP was able to create three different solutions that varied in scale and site expansion. The scheme chosen was carefully crafted to the site conditions of Brooklyn.
Based on this detailed analysis, a program was developed which responded to the current needs and future goals of the Administration, Student body, Medical staff and Hospital leadership. The program was then used to develop three schematic designs and cost estimates for discussion, feedback and funding purposes.
As DSP was intimately involved in the programmatic research, each design decision was guided by the unique culture of the facility. The favored scheme includes a building addition to address the existing problem of congestion and confusing circulation with the potential to add an additional two stories in the future as funds are procured.
When talking with students, it came as no surprise that they were not only looking for a place to eat meals, but also desired a social center to meet friends and collaborate with classmates. In response to this, the dynamic seating areas are organized around nodes which are accented by natural light, brought into the interior of the building through skylights.
The nodes define select spaces as destinations and play a role in way finding to help occupants navigate between SUNY Downstate Hospital and the Basic Science Research Facility.
The design also incorporates the patron’s need for a variety of healthy food options on a 24-hour/7-day-a-week schedule. To provide this necessity, the design proposes self-serve kiosks and Grab & Go options, which help to minimize overhead and allow food service to be maintained for longer hours.