Design Conference 2009: Analyze a location's traffic flow throughout the day


Before you build, make sure clients can access your site--even during rush hour.

Building a new hospital is a lot of work. You have to think about zoning regulations, environmental impact, floor plan design, and much more. One often-overlooked aspect of building design is client accessibility-after all, if your clients can't get to your facility, they can't take advantage of your stellar services.

At the Hospital Design Conference at CVC in Kansas City, veterinary architect Dan Chapel, AIA, president of Chapel Associates Architects in Little Rock, Ark., recalled one practice owner's difficulty in finding an accessible site. Unfortunately, the practice owner let a friendly relationship with his realtor distract him from properly critiquing the site.

The realtor offered to take the practice owner out to lunch, then to look at the building site. Everything looked great: The location was easy to get to and relatively traffic-free. The practice owner was ready to make his dream building a reality. What he didn't realize was that the site was virtually inaccessible in the morning and evening due to rush-hour traffic.

Luckily, the practice owner figured out the problem before it was too late. And now, you can learn from his mistake. Visit your prospective building site at various times throughout the day to make sure clients can get to your parking lot easily. Remove any inconveniences in your clients' travel, and they'll be more likely to reward you with their business.

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