HKS Architects

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HKS Architects: Dallas, TX

Equipment Used

Architecture Interactive Rental Services

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HKS website

HKS Architects invited the Architecture Interactive team to produce virtual mock-ups of not only multi-use operating rooms for their MD Anderson project in Houston, but also the ever-important 10,000 square foot atrium area.

Any medical planning company, architect, or construction company responsible for designing and building hospital operating rooms and patient rooms knows firsthand how extremely complex this process is. The intricacies are widespread, design communication errors are common, and coming to a final consensus across teams can sometimes seem impossible.

Virtual operating room mock-up:
Over a two day period, approximately 50 medical professionals (MD’s, anesthesiologists, RN’s, etc.) came to a shell floor of the hospital and walked into an empty room with sheetrock walls that laid out the physical footprint of the proposed operating room.  They then donned stereoscopic high-resolution head-mounted displays, and before their eyes equipment filled the room in full scale.  Each specific discipline had their own input as to where components of the operating room should be located and why. When they felt something needed to be changed, they simply moved it to the exact location they preferred using the WorldViz PPT Wand and.  Meanwhile, the HKS team was able to take notes on the MD’s suggestions and save the configuration of the room exactly how each doctor or nurse manipulated it.  This workflow allowed the HKS team to make hard decisions based on actual experiences rather than by looking at an architectural drawing or rendering on a 2D monitor.  Using the Architecture Interactive technology was experienced as a tremendous improvement by the architect as well as the medical professionals in comparison to alternative methods that foster costly communication errors.

10,000 square foot atrium area:
When does a VR mock-up have even more value than normal?  When it’s representing a space that is otherwise unable to be mocked-up.  When a 10,000 square foot atrium area with a 40+ foot sky-lit area is the design in question, conventional methods such as visualizing floor plans and renderings on a 2D monitor were the only option…until Architecture Interactive!  Project managers, owners, and the architects were able to put themselves in the newly designed atrium area and discuss the feeling gained as a visitor to the new hospital entrance.  The power of visualizing the future!

Jason Schroer, Associate Principal and Senior Vice President of HKS Architects

We worked directly with WorldViz to customize a relatively complex interactive model. WorldViz was always responsive and professional – willing to go the extra mile. The final product and their on-site set up was exceptional. The utilization of the interactive virtual environment allowed the design team to get immediate and real-time feedback from users. By utilizing the virtual environment, it helped us reach decisions and a consensus earlier within the design process and allowed the project to move forward without additional meetings. I would recommend this process again and I plan to utilize this technology on future projects.

Michael Ufer, AIA, LEED AP, Associate Principal and Senior Vice President

HKS engaged the services of WorldViz to assist a client in visualizing a very complex interior environment in three dimensions.

The system WorldViz has is fantastic, very easy to navigate and is a great tool to see and experience the project before it is built. The WorldViz team exceeded our expectations, as well as the clients’ and allowed the team to make critical design decisions in a timely manner!