2011 Hospital Design People's Choice Award winner: Looking rosy in Richmond - Hospital Design
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2011 Hospital Design People's Choice Award winner: Looking rosy in Richmond
Thirty-two veterinary hospitals have entered the 2011 Veterinary Economics Hospital Design Contest. One emerged victorious as the People's Choice Award winner.

VETERINARY ECONOMICS

Veterinary hospital exterior

Just months after assuming full ownership of Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic in Richmond, Texas, Dr. Sharon LaDell Moore began planning a new facility for the 45-year-old practice. Built in 1970, the building desperately lacked space to accommodate the practice’s rapid growth—and didn’t have the standout character Dr. Moore desired.

Located on a busy corridor leading to the county courthouse, the facility sat across from such imposing structures as the county library and community college—both tall, impressive structures. The one-story, 2,800-square-foot veterinary clinic, while much beloved, didn’t measure up, architecturally speaking.

With less than an acre to build on, expanding outward wasn’t much of an option. So Dr. Moore began thinking up. “We needed a facility that rose up out of the ground as an obvious landmark,” she says. “We wanted people to say, ‘You know, the corner with the veterinary facility’ when giving directions—something to draw eyes and drop jaws. Most of all, we wanted to give our clients something to talk about and keep them coming back.”

The new 9,966-square-foot, two-story facility not only caught the eye of clients, but also the eye of the 2011 Veterinary Economics Hospital Design Competition judges. Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic earned itself a Merit Award in the competition, with judges singing its praises for its beauty—both inside and out—rich materials, stunning reception area, and innovative use of technology.

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FINDING FAVOR IN A FALLEN ECONOMY
As has been the case for many veterinarians lately, the economic crisis greatly affected the building process. But for Dr. Moore, it worked in her favor. She was partway through the financing process when the bottom fell out of the economy. So she sat on her plans for the winter, considering whether it was really a good time to build. But a few months later she decided to finalize the lending offers.

Fortunately, new proposals led to rates much below those she’d received previously. Lowered interest rates in the SBA 504 program and SBA incentives for small businesses ended up saving her more than $18,000 in fees. What could have been a disaster ultimately led to better financing terms than she’d anticipated, as well as construction costs 22 percent lower than her preliminary budget due to lower materials costs and motivated contractors.

As an added bonus, a client satisfaction survey conducted by a drug manufacturer on behalf of the clinic found that clients loved the practice—everything except for the small waiting room and parking lot. “We already knew we were going to build, but the survey confirmed that we were making the right choice in forging ahead,” Dr. Moore says. “We knew we could afford it, and we were banking on current business and money we’d saved, not on the projected increase in business some practice owners plan for. It turned out to be a bargain for us and was definitely the right time.”

STANDOUT DESIGN
Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic boasts 24 interior wall colors, eight floor colors, and 10 countertop colors and textures. A client painted the lobby ceiling to resemble the sky, and each luxury boarding suite boasts its own themed mural and accoutrements. The courtyard lobby features an outdoor feel, with limestone walls, metal roofing, operable wooden shutters, hand-trowelled walls, and an upstairs veranda with French doors, full-length shutters, and wooden railings to provide a coastal feel. Each exam room door, which opens off the courtyard lobby, is a different color and style for added interest.

“Keeping up with all of these details wasn’t easy,” says Michael Moore, Dr. Moore’s husband and right-hand man during the building project. “I kept meticulous spreadsheets to keep the details straight and make sure the contractors got it right.”

Moore says the contractors relished taking on such a complicated project, seeing it as a chance to show off their craftsmanship. “Some of them are now bringing prospective clients in to show off the scope of their capabilities, since we used so many different yet complementary styles,” he says.

Another feature that keeps people talking—and cats purring—is the cat condo adoption area visible from the reception area courtyard. “We wanted to use cats as decorative items in the reception area while giving them a chance at adoption,” she says. “So far we’ve adopted out 150 kittens in the year we’ve been open.”

PRESERVING CLINIC CULTURE
Ninety-seven percent of Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic clients stated they enjoyed good value for their money at the practice before the new facility opened, according to a client satisfaction study. Dr. Moore didn’t want that perception to change following the transition. “We set out to preserve what’s most important to the culture of our practice—good medicine and good value,” she says. “That meant we had to keep our prices affordable even after the move.”

Because Dr. Moore based her financing on what she was already making—not the projected 20 percent jump experts say you can expect when building new—she didn’t need to raise prices. “We explored our fee schedule a year or two before starting the building process, made adjustments as necessary, and we haven’t had to touch them since,” she says. The practice did start offering new services as a result of the move, which helped boost revenue. And, as Michael Moore points out, a better facility makes work more efficient, which saves the practice money as it grows.

“And if clients are wowed by the building, our job is to meet their raised expectations through superior service and care,” Dr. Moore says. “For example, when we show clients the ICU, they’re much quicker to check a pet into the hospital for a medical condition than they would have been at the smaller clinic. Clients expect to receive a certain level of care all the way through the process when they see our surroundings. I’m grateful that our veterinarians and staff members showcase compassion and professionalism equal to their new surroundings.”

Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic
Location: Richmond, Texas
No. of exam rooms: 7
No. of associates: 6
Cost per square foot: $176
Building cost: $1,754,892 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,915,277
Total square footage: 9,966
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital reception area

Veterinary hospital exam room

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Veterinary hospital dog obstacle course

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View all the 2011 People's Choice Award entries:
Adobe Animal Hospital
Location: Los Altos, Calif.
No. of exam rooms: 17
No. of associates: 19
Cost per square foot: $129.32
Building cost: $1,810,544 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $3,883,279
Total square footage: 14,000
Leasehold conversion

Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

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Veterinary hospital night room private

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Albany Veterinary Clinic
Location: Albany, Ind.
No. of exam rooms: 3
No. of associates: 0
Cost per square foot: $110
Building cost: $460,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $549,000
Total square footage: 4,150
Addition/alteration to freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

Veterinary hospital exam room

Veterinary hospital treatment room

Veterinary hospital pet food

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All Valley Animal Care Center
Location: Meridan, Idaho
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 9
Cost per square foot: $202.95
Building cost: $4,618,928 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $6,671,643
Total square footage: 22,759
New freestanding building

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Animal Care Hospital
Location: Lafayette, La.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 0
Cost per square foot: $146
Building cost: $440,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $796,000
Total square footage: 3,000
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Veterinary hospital sign

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Animal Emergency and Referral Center
Location: Flowood, Miss.
No. of exam rooms: 3
No. of associates: 14
Cost per square foot: $223
Building cost: $1,160,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,845,300
Total square footage: 5,200
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

Veterinary hospital exam room

Veterinary hospital treatment room

Veterinary hospital operating room

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Animal Emergency Clinic & Referral Center
Location: Oakdale, Minn
No. of exam rooms: 8
No. of associates: 16
Cost per square foot: $118
Building cost: $1,298,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,539,745
Total square footage: 11,000
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

Veterinary hospital exam room

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Veterinary hospital lounge

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Animal Hosital at Brier Creek
Location: Raleigh, N.C.
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $160
Building cost: $674,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,829,000
Total square footage: 4,175
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital reception area

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Veterinary hospital surgery

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Animal Medical Center of Forney
Location: Forney, TX
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 0
Cost per square foot: $90.95
Building cost: $481,500 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,025,500
Total square footage: 5,294
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital sign

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Carpenter Animal Hospital
Location: Cary, N.C.
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 1
Cost per square foot: $135
Building cost: $858,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,508,000
Total square footage: 6,390
New freestanding building

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Veterinary gift shop

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Cascade West Veterinary Hospital
Location: Centralia, Wash.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 4
Cost per square foot: $117
Building cost: $839,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,159,500
Total square footage: 7,189
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Veterinary hospital basement

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Chelmsford Animal Hospital
Location: Chelmsford, Mass.
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $185
Building cost: $2,204,600 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $3,387,564
Total square footage: 11,900
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital examining room

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Cleveland Park Animal Hospital
Location: Greenville, S.C.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $186
Building cost: $1,459,806 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,118,787
Total square footage: 7,850
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

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Veterinary equine

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Countryside Veterinary Hospital
Location: Chelmsford, Mass.
No. of exam rooms: 8
No. of associates: 7
Cost per square foot: $200
Building cost: $1,759,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,575,438
Total square footage: 14,924
Addition/alteration to freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital ancillary services

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Veterinary hospital retail area

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Devon Veterinary Hospital
Location: Devon, Penn.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 3
Cost per square foot: $145
Building cost: $935,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,100,000
Total square footage: 7,177
Addition/alteration to a freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital waiting room

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Gentle Care Animal Hospital
Location: Forest, Va.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 1
Cost per square foot: $168.77
Building cost: $1,623,759 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,599,803
Total square footage: 9,621
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Goose Creek Veterinary Clinic
Location: Goose Creek, S.C.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $212.88
Building cost: $1,107,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,038,000
Total square footage: 5,200
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Veterinary hospital examining room

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Hamilton Animal Care
Location: Allentown, Penn.
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 3
Cost per square foot: $258.06
Building cost: $374,750 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $400,000
Total square footage: 6,584
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Horseshoe Lake Animal Hospital
Location: Collinsville, Ill.
No. of exam rooms: 8
No. of associates: 3
Cost per square foot: $176.63
Building cost: $992,851 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,720,444.5
Total square footage: 5,621
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Lafayette Veterinary Care Center
Location: Lafayette, La.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $155.63
Building cost: $1,839,520 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,517,999
Total square footage: 11,800
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Mission Animal & Bird Hospital
Location: Oceanside, Calif.
No. of exam rooms: 7
No. of associates: 7
Cost per square foot: $249.86
Building cost: $2,724,692 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $4,214,723
Total square footage: 10,905
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North Fork Veterinary Clinic
Location: Auburn, Calif.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 4
Cost per square foot: $172
Building cost: $1,113,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,503,000
Total square footage: 6,472
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Osage Animal Hospital
Location: Osage Beach, Mo.
No. of exam rooms: 5
No. of associates: 3
Cost per square foot: $194.11
Building cost: $1,587,510 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,523,325
Total square footage: 8,179
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital wall art

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Pacific Animal Hospital
Location: Oceanside, Calif.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 3
Cost per square foot: $231
Building cost: $1,550,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,640,000
Total square footage: 6,710
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital break room

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Park Animal Hospital & Pet Resort
Location: Provo, Utah
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 1
Cost per square foot: $88.06
Building cost: $1,166,681 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,053,206
Total square footage: 13,248
Addition/alteration to a freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital office back yard

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PAWS Integrative Veterinary Center
Location: Tucson, Ariz.
No. of exam rooms: 6
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $239.27
Building cost: $1,500,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,904,616
Total square footage: 6,269
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

Veterinary hospital reception area

Veterinary hospital exam room

Veterinary hospital treatment room

Veterinary hospital lab

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Rose-Rich Veterinary Clinic
Location: Richmond, Texas
No. of exam rooms: 7
No. of associates: 6
Cost per square foot: $176
Building cost: $1,754,892 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,915,277
Total square footage: 9,966
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital exterior

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Veterinary hospital exam room

Veterinary hospital treatment room

Veterinary hospital dog obstacle course

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Shenandoah Veterinary Hospital
Location: Martinsburg, W.V.
No. of exam rooms: 10
No. of associates: 4
Cost per square foot: $192.26
Building cost: $1,556,183 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $2,891,139
Total square footage: 8,094
New freestanding building

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Veterinary Healthcare Center
Location: Monterey Park, Calif.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 1
Cost per square foot: $370
Building cost: $2,400,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $3,830,000
Total square footage: 6,500
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital reception area

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Veterinary hospital fetch area

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Veterinary Medical Center
Location: Easton, Md.
No. of exam rooms: 8
No. of associates: 5
Cost per square foot: $224.12
Building cost: $1,841,631 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $3,101,230
Total square footage: 8,217
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital reception area

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Veterinary hospital treatment room

Veterinary hospital grief room

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Veterinary Specialty Center of Tucson
Location: Tucson, Ariz.
No. of exam rooms: 16
No. of associates: 19
Cost per square foot: $189
Building cost: $4,127,274 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $5,888,774
Total square footage: 31,834
Addition to freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital auditorium

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Winslow Animal Hospital
Location: Sicklerville, N.J.
No. of exam rooms: 10
No. of associates: 5
Cost per square foot: $160
Building cost: $1,675,512 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $3,654,918
Total square footage: 10,500
New freestanding building

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Veterinary hospital water therapy

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Worth Street Veterinary Center
Location: New York, N.Y.
No. of exam rooms: 4
No. of associates: 2
Cost per square foot: $382
Building cost: $1,050,000 (building only; excludes land purchase, landscaping, parking lot, etc.)
Total cost: $1,343,382
Total square footage: 2,750
Leasehold conversion

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Source: VETERINARY ECONOMICS,
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