Month: September 2013

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The modern development of the patient room is pushing design boundaries. Hospital operators are investing in new research to identify the interior design factors that can impact the health and mood of patients. Metropolis Magazine reported that there is a collaboration going on between contractors, medical professionals and interior designers to develop the best in patient room design. 

Creating patient rooms with private and public space qualities
Developing spaces that are inclusive and meet the needs of patients and medical personnel is growing in importance. Unlike the dorm-like appearance of previous hospitals, newer renditions are using much more usage of public and private space. Collaborators on a project found that too often medical rooms are not created with the mental health of the patient in mind. Spaces that are made to boost positive feelings with the use of natural light and privacy areas are often less usable for medical personnel who need to get in intensive care areas. 

Using unique materials in patient room design
The Patient Room 2020 was a collaborative design effort to explore next-generation inpatient care that took a look at patient and caregiver experiences. Corian Design Studio and DuPont worked together to develop a prototype room that used unique materials and layout to promote better care giving.

The use of Corian was a primary component of the room's design, according to the news source.

"Corian has unique abilities to be thermoformed and shaped," designer David Ruthven told the news source. "It's nonporous. And because everything is seamless and sanded, there aren't any places where mold or bacteria can flourish. It's easy for staff to keep clean. All this minimizes the spread of infection. Hospitals are places where people are supposed to heal. They shouldn't have to worry about getting sicker while they're there." 

Incorporating the right material solutions
At ASST, we have developed comprehensive material solutions for the healthcare industry. Our full package of products provide architects charged with creating functional, yet aesthetically pleasing patient rooms the right solutions.

Listed below are a few of the design materials we offer healthcare clients:

• Full package Division 6 casework
• OR paneling
• Trespa™ wall panels
• Toilet partitions
• SCULPTCOR® wall panel system
• Modular Vanity™ System
• MatchLine™ Stainless Sinks
• Cradle™ Baby Bowl

Options like the Modular Vanity system are constructed out of a stout polyethylene frame and covered with tough, durable Corian. As Ruthven told the news source, the material is nonporous and discourages the growth of mold, mildew or fungus, which reduces the risk of spreading illnesses. 

For more information on ASST's comprehensive offerings for healthcare, visit www.asst.com or contact ASST architectural support 717.630.1251 x305.

Consumers are more careful with their money than every before as a result of the Great Recession. For retail brands, this has meant a decline in purchases in brick-and-mortar locations. However, as the economy has improved, people are once again looking through and purchasing materials at their local stores. 

Yet, the retailers that are doing the best in the business are those that offer more than racks upon racks of items for purchase. Retail brands that have put thought into the interior design of a store are seeing more customers walk through the door. As a result, many organizations are focusing their attention on designing an interior space that fits the brand, is functional and stylish. Because modern styles are constantly changing, there are a few design trends that are current and some that are constant. Here are a few of the recent fads in retail design and how they can be incorporated for the long or short term and which ones are versatile and durable enough to stand the test of time.

Custom retail design fixtures
Shop owners are placing their premier merchandise on custom-built displays. According to Rehab Retail Design, many stores are looking to include these custom pieces because they highlight the products that are on trend or recently shipped to the store. However, displays are more than simple pieces of furniture – they need to be adaptable and, if possible, built to express the brand. 

Displays should be located where people naturally gravitate when they first enter a space. The source recommends placing key retail design fixtures in these spaces to attract the attention of customers and encourage people to stop and peruse the products. After all, it's important to encourage people to look throughout the store so that they are getting a chance to view all of the available merchandise, but not so long that the store is crowded and the turnover rate suffers. 

Create a path for customers to follow
When customers walk into a store, they often want to follow a direct path that leads them to the greatest amount of merchandise on display. A retail owner can better distribute people to the items of greatest value of purchase potential by creating custom flow paths. Using displays, walls and other pieces of furniture creatively will boost a retailer's chance of grabbing the attention of potential customers and encouraging them to take a look at the merchandise. 

Rehab Retail Design reported that interior designers need to be wary of accidentally creating a bottleneck in any location. The cash register should not be within easy view of the exit because then customers may leave the store without making a purchase once they are tired of waiting in line for a register. In addition, it's important that the lines for the registers are not blocking other customers from the merchandise. 

Incorporate the right combination of material solutions
For retailers looking to create a unique space, there is a need for durable, aesthetically pleasing features. SCULPTCOR™ by ASST provides a patented thermoformed architectural wall panel system that is versatile and durable. A retail owner will be able to create a much more unique space with the units because they come in a wide range of finishes. Consider using the wall panels as a statement piece in a store or to direct customers to the right display. The options are endless with the right solutions put in place. 

Please contact ASST at 717.630.1251 x305 for architectural support or x307 for specific project estimating assistance. 

The healthcare industry is undergoing rapid change in terms of technologies and process. New systems are being put in place in rapid succession and interior designers who specialize in building unique healthcare facilities are trying to create more adaptive spaces. 

Using adaptive, sustainable design in medical facilities
According to Contract Design Magazine, approximately 170,000 commercial buildings are constructed each year in the U.S. and another 44,000 commercial structures are demolished. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has stated that 48 percent of the waste stream created each year in the nation comes from building-related construction and demolition debris. This fact has led many interior designers, architects and contractors to reconsider their creation of specialized spaces. 

Together, these two trends are combining to create an overall movement toward creating adaptive sustainability. Those experts in the commercial construction and related industries are working together to build new or renovate old structures with a more adaptive design that can be modernized in the future without too much difficulty. 

Because the healthcare industry is in an almost constant state of flux and changes at such a rapid pace, it's important that medical facilities are designed with adaptability in mind. The right materials, floor plan and interior design can be created by professionals to support the creation of medical facilities that can be easily renovated to meet the changes needs of the industry. 

How to achieve adaptive, sustainable design
By renovating older medical facilities and using quality materials, a healthcare facility can achieve this balance for greater sustainability and operational efficiency. The experts at ASST have created a wide range of solutions for constructing high-quality medical centers. It is possible to achieve adaptive design without forgoing sustainability with the help of ASST. Our materials and design solutions are made to fit the changing needs of a healthcare facility. 

Listed below are just a few of the design solutions we offer our healthcare clients:

• Full package Division 6 casework (available in a variety of materials)
• OR paneling
• Trespa™ wall panels
• Toilet partitions
• SCULPTCOR®  wall panel system (with hard seam joints)
• Modular Vanity™ System
• MatchLine™ Stainless Sinks
• Cradle™ Baby Bowl 

ASST offers a comprehensive listing of quality solutions for healthcare facilities. If you're looking for more information, visit www.asst.com or contact ASST architectural support 717.630.1251 x305. 

Selecting the right color or combination of hues for a corporate space is crucial for worker performance. The right color scheme can help decrease the stress felt in an environment and help create the right kind of office environment. While some people may believe the science behind picking colors is complicated, it truly is not and rests more on common sense and understanding that one color over another will incite a reaction. Colors work together to create an environment and are the foundation for a strong interior design. 

As a result, it is important to ensure that the materials being selected for a corporate office fit within the desired color spectrum. Often the designers and companies that offer fabricated materials for work spaces have already thought about the colors of the product they create and how those hues fit in with an office environment. 

The science of color
Surrounding an office with a softer color will produce a calming reaction and encourage workers to concentrate on tasks at hand. As a result, lighter colors are better for design studios, research and development space and other areas that do not require bursts of frantic energy. In contrast, spaces like gyms and common areas often will use bright blasts of accent colors because they are energizing. Because color can make or break a space, it's important for an interior designer to use the right combination of hues to both stimulate and relax workers. 

ASST solutions come in a variety of work-oriented colors
SCULPTCOR™ by ASST provides a patented thermoformed architectural wall panel system that is versatile and durable. A corporate office will benefit from the non-porous, durable, stain-resistant and easy-to-clean solid surface. The solution comes in five standard colors that are perfect for creating a relaxing environment in an office, where workers will be able to concentrate on tasks at hand. Panel reveals are available in either straight or curved frames in five standard colors: Pure white, cream, warm white, frozen white and white lotus. Additional colors and special panel sizes are available for those who ask. The wall panel sizes are 24"x64" nominally and are presently available in three standard patterns: Twist, Wave and Smooth. The largest uncut pressed panel size available is 29.5" x 72" Please contact ASST at 717.630.1251 x305 for architectural support or x307 for specific project estimating assistance. 

Creating a unique bar and restaurant experience should be a primary goal for business owners. Having a bar or restaurant establishment that creates an entire experience for diners is exceptionally important as competition gets fierce for customers. According to the U.S. Bureau for Labor Statistics, the average American family spent $2,505 at restaurants in 2010. On average, consumers spend about $1.7 billion every year in restaurants and bars.

The National Restaurant Association reported that Americans spend about 46 percent of their food dollar on food not prepared inside the home, which adds up to about $2,400 spent annually in restaurants for the typical family.

Gaining a chunk of all of those dollars may depend largely on whether a dining establishment provides more than a simple meal and beverage. Restaurants and bars will not only have to prepare food and drink that is appealing to its market, but also help create an atmosphere that customers desire. 

Restaurants work to promote upscale atmospheres
Restaurant owners across the nation are working hard to promote their establishments as local hotspots. In some areas of the country, this effort is much more difficult just because of the shear number of people and dining establishments trying to serve everyone. However, some places are standing out because they are bring something unique to the table, so to speak. Contract Design Magazine reported that Jelsomino, a Manhattan club, offers customers a fun-filled evening of karaoke unlike any other. The upscale environment of the club and stand-out stage makes this place unique even in a city like New York. The speakeasy feel of the club is nothing in comparison to the high-quality materials coating the place in splendor. Even the most functional piece of equipment is stylish. And that same desire for flair goes into everything, including hiring wait staff who are professional singers and able to help someone on the karaoke stage belt out a tune at $30 a song. 

The speakeasy environment of the club may not be very unique or modern, but the restaurant owner isn't trying to reinvent the wheel. According to the news source, the club's interior design is more intended to promote a total immersion into the culture of a speakeasy during the roaring 20s. 

Create exceptional spaces using quality materials
By using the right combination of materials, a restaurant owner will be better able to promote the creation of a unique space to attract customers again and again. ASST specializes in the fabrication of premium solid surface and translucent resin materials that are able to create modern, sleek environments for a restaurant and public space. While some restaurant owners like to create an atmosphere that revolves around the past, it's also easy to create a futuristic and modern space with the right material choices that are intended to last and increase the value of the property. 

SCULPTCOR® by ASST is a patented thermoformed architectural wall panel system that is built with beauty and function in mind. The system is fabricated from a non-porous, stain-resistant and easy-to-clean surface that is ideal for a restaurant to use. The material can be used for wall panels, column covers, retail facades, elevator cladding, casework, ceiling panels and furniture. As a result, it offers the right blend of flexibility and statement for a restaurant looking to create an impression on diners. 

Please contact ASST at 717.630.1251 x305 for architectural support or x307 for specific project estimating assistance.

The evolution of healthcare design has demonstrated that the atmosphere that a patient finds him or herself in can drastically impact the well-being of a person. Patient rooms have transformed from dark corridor styled spaces to much more spacious and bright areas. However, the evolution of healthcare facility design and patient rooms is hardly over. There is always room for advancement, yet many interior designers and contractors don't dream of spending their career creating unique medical spaces, which is slowing the development.

Convincing designers to consider the healthcare field
Metropolis Magazine reported that many interior designers and architects don't dream of creating the next best design for a medical center. In contrast, many professionals find themselves discovering the needs of the field and the satisfaction for designing interior solutions for medical facilities much more haphazardly.

"As an undergrad at Clemson, I had no interest in designing hospitals," said David Ruthven, principal designer of Patient Room 2020—a prototype hospital room on display at DuPont's Corian Design Studio in New York City, and launched this month in concurrence with the International Contemporary Furniture Fair. "I thought they looked ugly, and that they wouldn't be a lot of fun to work on. And I remembered visiting family members in hospitals, and wanting to get out of them as quickly as possible."

However, that all changed after Ruthven enrolled in Clemson's Architecture + Health graduate program. There he learned about the stakeholders in medical centers and the challenges associated with creating a space that meets the varying needs of everyone who has to use that space. He went on to tell Metropolis Magazine that dealing with actual clients, nurses, doctors and the patients' needs opened his eyes to the needs of the healthcare industry and how he could add his skills to improve patient care.

Design desires of healthcare professionals
Healthcare professionals realize that the design of a space impacts their ability to accomplish tasks and the comfort of the patient. Ruthven and a team took the needs and advice of healthcare professionals and have designed Patient Room 2020. The innovative design included a new bathroom configuration and nurse workstation, improvements to patient rooms and the inclusion of more durable materials that offer easy cleaning to hospital staff. 

"People in healthcare desperately want to innovate," said Salley Whitman, co-founder and executive director at NXT Health, according to the news source. "The problem is they don't have the time or resources to do it. They're dealing with patients who are sick and dying; there's no safe place to step back and ask what the customer really needs. Like any industry, healthcare needs a separate R&D department if we're ever going to see true innovation." 

Innovative healthcare design is becoming the focus of some interior design and architectural firms. 

Invest in quality solutions in healthcare centers
At ASST, we have developed comprehensive material solutions for healthcare design. We are dedicated to providing architects and interior designers access to high-quality materials that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Listed below are a few of the design materials we offer healthcare clients:

• Full package Division 6 casework
• OR paneling
• Trespa™ wall panels
• Toilet partitions
• SCULPTCOR® wall panel system
• Modular Vanity™ System
• MatchLine™ Stainless Sinks
• Cradle™ Baby Bowl 

Our SCULPTCOR® thermoformed wall panel system is able to provide medical centers with a beautiful interior that is made to meet the needs of those who use the space. This, in addition to the variety of other material solutions we offer, makes the brand a go-to source for architects and interior designers creating modern healthcare facilities. For more information on ASST's comprehensive offerings for health care, visit www.asst.com or contact ASST architectural support 717.630.1251 x305.

Commercial spaces get updated

As the effects of the recession begin to recede, many corporations are beginning the process of remodeling offices and other public spaces. Technological advancements and a desire for a new, modern space is pushing forward this trend for renovation. For commercial residential spaces, like towers that house apartments above retail outlets or office spaces, the desire for statement lobbies that convey the overall dedication to quality and style is coming back. 

Commercial and residential combine
"Commercial residential projects were not financed for a long while, and now that's really happening again. People are going back to the idea that quality is the way to go. I think developers should be mindful that the audience is savvy. They know about kitchen manufacturers, millwork, and fixtures, so you can't get tricky. Everything has to be thoughtful and well crafted," Christine Gachot, co-founder of New York's Gachot, told Interior Design Magazine.

Commercial spaces that act as lobbies and grand entrances to residential apartments above are growing in popularity. Many people enjoy the ability to walk by key stores on the way home, instead of having to run out and finish errands. Because this is a more unique offering, interior designers are focusing on making these retail spaces, which sometimes can hold restaurants, modern and enticing. Stakeholders in the property want these commercial spaces to offer services and products, but also an experience.

As a result, the use of innovative structures and design components is essential to the creation of these spaces. 

How ASST can help boost the design of public commercial spaces
At ASST, we pride ourselves on providing interior designers and contractors with an innovative system that improves the look and feel of a space, while demonstrating exceptional durability. SCULPTCOR® by ASST is a thermoformed architectural wall panel system that has already proven successful in a number of retail and dining environments. The wall panels are available in three standards patterns: Twist, wave and smooth, and in five standard colors, including: Pure white, cream, warm white, frozen white and white lotus. 

SCULPTCOR is a versatile solution that can be used for wall panels, column covers, retail facades, elevator cladding, casework, ceiling panels and furniture. As a result, an interior designer or contractor looking to outfit a commercial public space can use this fabricated material for a wide range of projects throughout a space. 

Restaurant designers are working hard to incorporate new elements into their spaces, mainly the food. Metropolis Magazine reported that designers who specialize in creating unique restaurant spaces are focusing on using materials and elements that draw directly from the type of food that is being served at the establishment. 

Designing with food in mind
According to Alessandro Munge, a partner with Sai Leung in the Toronto-based studio Munge Leung, restaurant design is dependent upon pairing the plates with the place.

"When that dish hits the table, your enjoyment of that dish also depends on what you sit on and what the table is made of," he said. "It's not just about the food."  

Interior designers are taking inspiration from their local communities and the dishes served in a restaurant to create a unique space. The harmony between dish, place and location is a growing phenomena in urban environments as contractors, architects and designers look for the next great thing in interior design. 

Incorporating durable materials in restaurant design
If an interior designer is looking to incorporate the trend of using elements from the dishes and location of the restaurant in the space, he or she may want to consider using a versatile material that is durable. ASST helps restaurant owners and designers incorporate the right blend of materials to create a modern space with SCULPTCOR®. ASST recently finished the Macy's flagship Herald Square New York City location with a new luxury Italian restaurant, Stella 34 Trattoria. ASST performed the fabrication & installation of SCULPTCOR, with curved thermoformed solid surface upholstered seating booths and walnut millwork waiter stations throughout the new restaurant. Create a unique, modern dining experience by using the right blend of materials. 

The flexibility of SCULPTCOR allows it to be used in a wide range of spaces. Use the fabricated wall panel system to create enclosed enclaves for guests' privacy so that those dining together can be buffered from the sights and sounds of the restaurant and better enjoy each other's company. A textured and colored wall installation can work as a statement wall in a space and set the mood for the rest of the interior design. The aesthetic options are endless with the use of a versatile wall panel solution like SCULPTCOR.