Text description provided by the architects. The Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes is an outpatient clinic and research facility for children, adults and families with type I diabetes. The center is located in the very heart of the new university health sciences campus, facing the campus' central arrival green. An historic Army hospital is the organizing structure and primary precedent for all new projects on this new campus.
The building’s parti recognizes the importance of public space in the building relative to the order of the campus. A generous story gallery welcomes patients and researchers. Building massing and facades recognize the fundamental program elements of clinical space on the lower two levels, research labs on the upper two, and collaborative office suits on each end. The public facade of the Center consists of the warmth of the patient gallery, the relationship of the new center to the historic army hospital, and the iconic playfulness of a children's playroom.
The masonry, limestone and metal exterior is consistent with the campus palette of materials. The interior public spaces are finished in warm birch, which glow in the morning eastern sunshine. The charcoal slate of the floors provides a striking contrast to the light walls.
A significant goal of the design of the new Center was to have an iconic image that spoke to children, to the importance of the work of the facility, and to relate to the new and growing university campus.