An indoor track, abundant with natural light, takes center stage at the OhioHealth Neuroscience Wellness Center in Columbus. Located on a hill at the edge of a forest preserve, in a modest 23,500-square-foot building at the perimeter of OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital’s campus, the center provides clinical, exercise, education, and emotional support programs to people living with such neurological conditions as Parkinson’s disease, strokes, and multiple sclerosis, as well as to their caregivers.
Designed by Gensler, the interdisciplinary prevention and rehabilitation hub, completed in fall 2020, frames the landscape throughout and maximizes, yet also controls, access to natural daylight. The beloved indoor track, where patients comfortably build up their walking routines, also wraps an outdoor courtyard and community “hearth” with 360-degree views that can be accessed by even patients with low mobility, a space for visits with friends and family and alfresco therapy sessions alike. There is also a quiet studio for mind-body classes that directly connects to an expansive deck where additional programming unfolds in cooperative weather. Floor-to-ceiling windows, looking directly onto the forest preserve, also establish a connection to nature.
This bucolic setting certainly helps patients build their health, strength, and sense of community. Organic transitions between materials and the indoors and outdoors as well and clear and intuitive wayfinding all support a neuro wellness-centered, tranquil environment. But, the institution is also a practical one. Exercise and wellness studios are equipped with overhead harnessing for extra balance, there is a café and teaching kitchen on the premises, and the OhioHealth John J. Gerlach Center offers the convenience of onsite cognitive neurology and geriatric assessment clinics.
A version of this article was originally published by Healthcare Design.