Have you ever wished for a thinking room? Where you could contemplate, ponder, and just be with your thoughts? Well, you are not alone, one of Europe’s largest and busiest children’s hospitals, Alder Hey, felt the same way. They involved all the hospital staff to sit in a specially designed thinking room called the Vox Pod so that they could reflect on their thoughts and provide noteworthy feedback that would be vital in the hospital’s continuous improvement.
The Vox Pod is created by WMB Studio to make this process comfortable by providing a space for the staff to record their feelings and suggestions on video. The pod is designed to be functional so that the staff wouldn’t have to go out of their way to give the feedback – mobility is one of its most important features so that it can easily be moved between locations to serve multiple departments within the hospital. The flexible nature of the Vox Pod also lets it double as an orientation point for key public gatherings, casual break space, or a micro-meeting room, and with its porcupine-like build, it is hard to miss!
The goal of the design team was to create an adaptable, movable, multi-functional booth that was also spacious and inviting. “The form is derived from a radiused and extruded equilateral triangle, divided into three equal modules. The segmentation facilitates ease of movement and allows for reconfiguration as individual elements, a connected pair, or as a completely enclosed pod. As well as fulfilling the key objectives of the brief, Vox Pod sits as a sculptural beacon within the hospital,” describes the team. It features an oculus roof light and porthole windows to allow natural light and also maintaining a visual connection to the wider hospital environment. The exterior features inverted acoustic foam pyramids that give it an expressive, unique visual aesthetic while the interiors are adorned with birch ply lining and warm-colored fabrics to invoke a calming atmosphere where one can truly be with their thoughts.
In my opinion, Vox Pod can work for every industry/workplace. Especially after we have all had a taste of working from home vs working in an office, I am sure we will have constructive feedback that can improve our work-life balance and pivot towards a more flexible lifestyle. I got all these thoughts without sitting in the pod – just saying.
Designer: WMB Studio