Clinique vétérinaire St-Onge
By : BLH Architectes
GRANDS PRIX DU DESIGN – 16th edition
Discipline : Interior Design
Categories : Education, Institution & Healthcare / Professional Office & Clinic : Gold Certification
Categories : Special Awards / Interior Design +Wood : Gold Certification
Built in Drummondville, Quebec, the Clinique vétérinaire St-Onge is revolutionizing veterinary space by revisiting the traditional clinic configuration to increase efficiency, centralize practice and create spaces that enhance the business model and enrich the client experience. The layout is based on fluid circulation areas between the consultation areas, the care areas and the client spaces with an attractive design. Every gesture has been designed to provide an exceptional environment for animals and their owners.
With this new two-level, 411 square meter building, the owner wanted to create an efficient veterinary hospital with a sensitive design that would provide a superior experience and help reduce stress by creating enveloping and welcoming environments that soothe animals, clients and employees. She wanted to create a model of an efficient clinical environment and a design of beautiful and functional spaces that put fluidity and efficiency at the heart of all interventions.
The building’s distinctive architecture features an articulated volume and abundant fenestration that gives the building a strong signature and provides abundant natural light. The use of a wood structure and exposed wood decking in the reception area and the waiting room contributes to the beauty of the place and creates a warm atmosphere. The large windows on two floors allow the richness of the wood to be appreciated from the street. The generous use of wood in the interior design, the choice of materials and the exterior cladding beautifully completes the ensemble and creates a timeless place with a comforting atmosphere and refined spaces.
Wood was an immediate choice for the reception and waiting areas because of its warm and enveloping character. Although it is delicate to use wood in clinical spaces intended for nervous animals that are likely to urinate on the surfaces, the architect and project manager found judicious and original ways to enhance it. By concentrating the architectural wood elements on the high surfaces and by favoring an exposed wood structure in the glazed part of the building dedicated to the reception area and the waiting room, the professionals were able to increase and diversify the modes of application in a clinical space that was less favorable to its use. The acoustic properties of wood were also put to use in this large glazed space likely to be echoed with animal’s noises. The creation of a large wood overhang, suspended from the roof structure, added to the quality of the interior space visually and acoustically. The aesthetic properties of wood were also used in the store side to give the commercial space a vintage, public market style. The gesture was a nod to the timeless and warm aspect of wood, which was widely used at the time in farm country environments often associated with animals. Finally, the use of real wood siding on the exterior completes the ensemble by extending the rustic chic style of the interior onto the facades.