“The winds are really high there, anywhere from 25 to 90 miles an hour,” said Harbans Ghataode, associate and senior designer at Taylor Design. “When I walked the site, I was almost blown away—literally.”
The project, then, was designed to attract Kaiser members to the site and shelter and nurture them with outdoor pathways protected from the wind by earthen berms, an open courtyard sheltered between the two legs of the nearly A-shaped building and an inviting, wavy, energy-efficient glass wall on the southern façade. The wall tilts at 10 degrees to offer shade from the summer sun while still enabling sunlight and mountain views to reach the building's interior.
“The whole idea about the wave was to dissipate the wind and keep it away from the main entrance,” Ghataode said.
“We tried to create micro-environments so (patients and staff) wouldn't be trapped inside, and they could go outside and engage in the environment,” said John Kouletsis, vice president of facilities planning and design at Kaiser Permanente.