Spatial design review of an emergency department plan

As part of their expansion plan, a healthcare system in New York State USA was looking to renovate an older emergency department. Our healthcare consultants analyzed the market, technology trends and patient and staff needs and provided a new spatial design including a number of calculated improvements on:


  • Access to daylight;
  • Necessary staff steps;
  • Staff visibility.
We were asked to apply our strategic design capabilities to determine if the existing architect’s plans fit the customer’s short and long term strategic plans that aim to provide an excellent care experience in an efficient and effective way.”

Observation levels

Our approach


Although an architect’s plan existed for the renovation project, the customer asked our strategic design team to make sure it fit their strategic goals of improving clinical processes and enhancing overall patient and staff experience.

Data analytics


To understand the ED’s current challenges and user perceptions, our team began with a thorough analysis of market demands. In parallel qualitative and quantitative data from patient and staff was gathered and comments from social media channels and results from a community perception study were reviewed.

Spatial assessment


The current architect’s plan was assessed in terms of layout, clinical workflow and performance. The assessment looked into circulation paths for staff and patients, and evaluated lines of sight and acces to daylight all areas.

Kingston Render
A concept for using central courtyards and clerestory windows to bring daylight into the ED facility.



The new environment provides a friendly atmosphere and can have a positive effect on the experience of everyone using the facility. Compared to the current architect’s plan some improvements were calculated:


  • 97% of all patient rooms are designed to have access to direct or indirect daylight, as central courtyards and clerestory windows provide daylight to the core of the facility.
  • The number of steps staff needs to take to a patient room and fetch medication, supplies and equipment from storage is reduced by 49%.
  • In busy and hectic areas it can be comforting to know the nurses are keeping their eye on you. The new design allows nurses 82% clear visibility over the patient rooms.
*Results from case studies are not predictive of results in other cases. Results in other cases may vary.

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