2011 haiti_utk publication

One to Another

A Downloadable Publication from the 2011 Haiti UTK Studio


WBIR Report of the Haiti Studio

Introduction haiti_utk

Welcome to the Haiti UTK site! The work on these pages reflects student engagement in design for both a school and housing for the community of Fonds des Bloncs, Haiti in collaboration with the Haiti Christian Development Fund. The project was initiated in the early fall of 2010 and subsequently a class of 19 students, in the spring of 2011, was given the responsibility of deisgning a secondary school. The school is under constuction. A new group of students is now hard at work developing new housing in Fonds des Blancs. The work of these students can be seen in the pages of this blog. Students of the class will be traveling to Haiti Februay 2-6 to collect addiional data. It is anticipated that this second phase of the project will be completed in late April with construction starting summer 2012. The work of the students is being guided by three primary faculty, John McRae, David Matthews, and Chris King, a local practictioner. The students during their exploration will engage a wide range of issues including context, culture, resources, climate and other outside factors not common to their expereince. 

Students: Cassidy Barnett, Aaron Brown, Sarah Heimermann, Mitzi Coker, Emily Corgan, Ben Cross, Peter Duke, Emily Fike, Sam Funari, Lauren Heile, Kendra McHaney, Lauren Metts, Morgan Oiler, Bernice Paez, Forrest Reynolds, Emily Ryan, James Sawyer, Zachary Smith, Robert Thew, Cory Wikerson Faculty: John McRae, Chris King, David Matthews

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Special Thanks!

The Haiti Studio for spring 2012 is being supported by HaitiServe foundation based in Knoxville Tennessee, that is focused on outreach and engagement in improving conditions in Haiti. 

Entries in Long Term Clinic (3)


Fort Liberte Medical Clinic - Erin + Emmie

Our goal for the addition of the existing medical clinic is to provide a larger facility that blends in with the Haitian surroundings, as well as make the patients and staff feel as comfortable as possible. We intend to implement this by utilizing passive ventilation and natural lighting as much as possible, and to thoughtfully consider the materials used throughout the project. Another important element is clear flow of circulation between the patients, the patient and staff members, and the staff alone.

The design was modified to include all of these aspects, as well as considering the sustainability of the building in regards to materials and the durability. We also considered the phasing of the project to help with the ease of construction.

After talking with several professionals and the nursing students at the Foundry event, suggestions, critiques, and praise were given about the current direction of our project. The idea of the clear circulation and the division between patient and staff areas was a positive aspect. As well as a central courtyard is important for the passive ventilation in addition to the calming effect.

Our next steps will be to consider all of the feedback given from the different professionals and nursing students. We will consider the circulation and placement of each program element. In addition the layout of the design, the exterior façade will be a major consideration to assist in directions and clarity. Another important element that will be addressed is the courtyard and how that helps with certain aspects of the circulation, aesthetics, and ventilation.


Clinic at Fort Liberte - Team Sawyer, Sherborne, & Wetherington

Complete Project Page 1

Complete Project Page 2


 Much of Haiti's population cant read. Many have never been to a hospital. The medical need is so great that people will wait all day at a health care provider for the possibility of receiving care.

Our goal is to create a clinic that takes into consideration the patient experience and projects an image of professionalism, order and safety for its visitors.

As a patient, the first thing that you would receive upon checking into the facility is a card with a color on it. You would then be directed to go to the waiting room with the color that correspond to your card. The purpose of this system is to avoid both crowding and  confusion in the clinic: reduce crowding by spreading out the waiting areas, and reduce confusion by enabling the doctors to find their patients in the correct room color.

The only section of the main building that is completely enclosed is the single stretch of room at the core. Circulation and waiting are covered porches that look out onto a central courtyard. this allows for potential overflow space, natural ventilation and shading. This will also make it simpler to vent the core rooms by using a perforated wall on the east and south sides while maintaining privacy with a clearstory section on the west and north sides that encourages airflow through the rooms.


Another Important consideration for the function of the space is the path of circulation - or paths as the case is here. The types and range of treatments needed for patients will vary and it is important for movement through the facility to remain comprehensive and as uniform as possible. As such, we have taken into careful consideration the positioning of the entry, exit and used spaces so that no matter what you come to the clinic for, your journey through it remains relatively the same.



Emergency Response Unit: Doctors on Demand

Unit Enroute to Disaster ZoneWith a background in emergency services and a few years of designs for Haiti under my belt, I was excited to begin this project.  My initial idea was to revisit the idea of an ambulance, adapting it for post disaster Haiti.  After working through several iterations with Caroline McDonald and Lauren Metts, we decided that due to the lack of resources post disaster dedicating a vehicle to a emergency response unit was a poor idea.  We then worked through the way that we could deliver a emergency response unit that could function as a self-sustainable medical clinic. 

We looked at the way PODS (portable on demand storage) units are delivered, as well as dumpsters that are rolled off of a truck here in the states.  We decided to utilize the mechanics of these systems to remove our unit from the back of a typical Haitian cab over truck.  Our unit is designed to be removed from the back of a cab over chassis with a hand winch and removable jacks.  After removal from the chassis, the removable jacks can be utilized to level the unit on uneven terrain.

Unit being removed from cab over truck

We designed the unit to accommodate a four person medical crew in the shelter of the unit.  Retractable awnings with removable sides on each side provide for a flexible layout that can accommodate most any needs.  The interior of the unit contains bulk medical supplies and sleeping quarters for the staff.  In the event that a extremely private exam is necessary, the interior bunks can be utilized for just such an exam.  Exterior storage includes a large rescue style compartment that contains removable benches, spine boards, and various tools that could be used in collapse rescue situations.  Two compartments that open downward on each side become a work surface for a medical provider and contain a limited amount of necessary medical supplies.

Living conditions on the interior are tight, but comfortable.  The top bunks fold up to allow extra head room for the bottom bunks to become a bench during the day.  Storage is included under the bottom bunks to utilize every inch of space.  A water storage tank can store in excess of 600 gallons of clean water to be used as the medical personell see fit.  Ventilation is provided by small ports at floor level that introduce fresh air into the unit, and a large vent along the center of the roof structure that exhausts the air from within.  A small amount of electricty could be produced by photovoltaic panels mounted to the top of the unit.  This electricty could be used to charge two way radios, cell phones, or life saving medical equipment.

In order for this unit to become a piece of the Haitian culture, it is designed to be based at a local hospital.  Post disaster, the unit will be dispatched to the disaster area and delivered by a modified cab over truck.  After initial set up, the unit will begin functioning as designed.  To alleviate concerns of the Haitian people about the origins of the unit, it is design to accomodate typical colors seen in Haitian healthcare environments.  Local Haitians could paint a mural on the exterior of the unit, eventually turning the unit into a mobile canvas that tells a story of the disasters it has seen or good hygenie practices.Unit awaiting initial setup