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Wellspring Calgary

Calgary, AB



Prime Consultant, Architecture

12,000 sq ft | 1,100 sq m

Project Description

In partnership with Wellspring Calgary, S2 designed a warm and welcoming facility for individuals and families affected by cancer. The Randy O’Dell House provides a range of non-medical support, resources, and programs in a home-like and comfortable environment and is one of Alberta’s first buildings designed to meet WELL Building Standard Silver certification. Our design focus for the Randy O’Dell House was to meet the emotional, social, and practical needs of people living with cancer – which is why the project team chose to follow WELL Building Standard, comprising of aspects which address specific areas of occupant health, comfort, and knowledge. These features are categorized into seven concepts: air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind.

The site was designed to ensure plentiful outdoor gathering spaces for patients and families, including an 8,000 square foot garden area to be planted with flowering shrubs and perennials. Outdoor green spaces provide benches, gazebos, wander paths and shaded areas for sitting, visiting and enjoying the landscaping. The building was situated on the site to provide convenient access for visitors, as well as to allow for future expansion. The building was given two entrances and just like many homes, there is a formal front door which faces onto the main street and the more often used west entrance functions like a side door, providing visitors and staff a more residential experience upon approach.

The Randy O’Dell House functions as a health support facility but is intentionally very residential in its appearance to reflect a place of comfort, caring, compassion and community. Thoughtfully designed programmatic spaces include a lounge, sitting areas, art room, library, kitchen, community room, exercise area, child minding area, offices and counselling rooms. A garden and large outdoor green space provide nurturing outdoor areas.

WELL Building Standard

The WELL Building Standard sets the stage for improved long and short term health benefits for people who use the facility. Considering that many of the members are a vulnerable group who are suffering from or recovering from cancer, it just makes a great deal of sense that we would want their environment to be as healthy as possible. WELL Certification means that the building has met the requirements as established by the International WELL Building Institute.

There are many benefits of the WELL program covering a broad spectrum of health outcomes. Some of the more tangible elements would be using healthy building products such as paints, flooring and insulation which reduce exposure to potentially harmful elements. Another feature would be the lighting which was carefully designed in order to provide as much natural light as possible but at the same time reducing glare and allowing for occupants to control the amount of light entering a space which is so important for certain individuals who are undergoing chemotherapy. Other WELL features include sound attenuation, privacy considerations and fitness promotion such as wider staircases with artwork on the walls which promotes the use of the stairs over the elevator.