Richard Turlington Architects worked in a design-build relationship with Petra Construction in North Haven CT to renovate and restore St. Mary’s Hospital’s main lobby in Waterbury CT back to its original 1930 glory but with a modern aesthetic. Over the course of 70 years and a multitude of renovations, the Hospital had lost the value of a clearly defined lobby and lost its identity because the public and staff did not use the critical entry point any longer. The main lobby had become just another corridor in an otherwise dull hallway.
Working with Petra and the Hospital staff, Richard Turlington Architects applied a holistic design approach the overall area adjacent to the original lobby. By removing the existing walls we could push the lobby back to its original size, we could add a large gift shop and café, we could enlarge the lobby connection to the adjacent bank of elevators and we could expose the chapels stained glass windows and original brick façade.
The original lobby floor had used terrazzo with a custom floor emblem which we restored. We introduced more limestone tiling on the walls and a central security and information station made from quarter sawn white oak as wells a new entry vestibule also made of white oak. The new ceiling is a crisp white with a sky blue dome which floats above the entire lobby making the lobby space feel taller than it actually is.
In all, the renovation was small at 3,500 sf but became a jewel that patients experience every time they enter the hospital. The new lobby builds on the Hospitals reputation and credibility for treating its patients with care and respect.