A soaring, triple-height lobby welcomes patients and visitors to the Women’s Specialty Center in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. Designed by the Philadelphia office of Nelson Worldwide, the two-volume structure, situated in mixed-use development the Village at Valley Forge, offers a range of holistic services that address women’s physical, emotional, and mental health.
“It was our ideal to create a location where women can take care of all of their healthcare needs in one place. We wanted a building that was welcoming, easy to access, and appealing,” says JoAnn Magnatta, senior vice president of planning and design at Philadelphia-based Main Line Health, the not-for-profit health system that collaborated with Axia Women’s Health on the project.
On the fifth floor, MLH’s clinical space is divided into nine cross-pollinated neighborhoods that focus on the likes of breast health and heart and vascular care. “The neighborhoods are interconnected by a support staff corridor that spans the length of the floor, which allows the cross-trained medical assistants and nurse practitioners to adapt to capacity and move easily between specialties, going where they are needed,” says Andrew Simmons, project manager at Nelson Worldwide.
Given the center’s proximity to the Pennsylvania Turnpike and a major interstate highway, the project team maximized visibility by adding large vertical “fins” in MLH’s brand colors of green and blue that project out from the building and are illuminated at night. Green decorative screens also camouflage the tower’s parking decks.
Supersized floral graphics, including the oil painting reproduced onto vinyl canvas panels that hang over the reception desk, set a warm, vivacious tone while doubling as wayfinding. This hotel feel is reinforced by the more than 200 pieces of artwork sourced through Main Line Health’s Art Ability program, the banquette-linedcafé, a Wellness Porch stocked with healthcare and wellness products curated specially for women, lounge-like seating, and soon, a roof garden.
“We know that we need to be able to diagnose and treat patients, but we have shifted the focus over the years to wellness and prevention,” says Magnatta, “which drove our thinking here.”
A version of this article was originally published by Healthcare Design.