Change your reception area with the flip of a switch
By Douglas R. Hurlbert, AIA
If your reception area seems dull, new light fixtures can provide a low-cost solution. Although most veterinary hospital waiting areas have plenty of light, the quality is often poor.
Many older clinics use 2-by-4 lay-in or surface-mounted wraparound fluorescent fixtures. Consider replacing these lights with new fluorescent fixtures that feature one-inch egg-crate louvers to direct light downward and eliminate glare. Replacement lay-in units cost $65 to $70 each, while surface-mounted fixtures average $70 to $75 each.
To reduce glare even more, install parabolic louver fixtures equipped with three-lamp T-8 technology. They feature an electronic ballast for quieter and cooler operation and three energy-efficient tubes that produce more light than four standard fluorescent tubes. These lay-in units cost $100 each. Replacement lights are available at most light-fixture supply houses.
Also install recessed can lights to highlight signs, artwork, or retail displays. These $25 units can make big impressions on clients.
Douglas R. Hurlbert, AIA, is an architect in Inman, S.C., who specializes in veterinary clinic design. You can reach him at unitas @sprintmail.com.
April 2001 Veterinary Economics