Daylighting in architecture has traditionally been a practice-based, intuitive and experiential process, based on the common notion that daylight enhances our spatial and sensory awareness. This Thesis tests the effectiveness of daylight as a mechanism for creating a psychological and emotional impact, and promoting wellness within the confines of designed spaces. The creation of the project is based on a Maggie’s Cancer Centre model of patient-centric design. Maggie’s Centers have been traditionally located in suburban settings, where they may be ideally oriented for day-light infiltration and outdoor connectivity. The Maggie’s model promotes three primary design factors: i) abundance of daylight, ii) connection to nature, and iii) a de-institutionalized environment.
The design project was purposefully situated within the specific constraint of an urban environment, in downtown Toronto, Ontario; where the goal is to achieve a spatial character that embodies these three design factors where daylight and access to views of nature are limited by the urban context. The project demonstrates a method of daylight centric design that utilizes three primary techniques for daylighting that were extracted from precedent analysis: i) Direct light, ii) Bounced light, and iii) Diffused light.
Through the methodical harvesting and manipulation of daylight, the project highlights its potential for positively enhancing patient experience and aptly demonstrates the curation of varied experiential narratives in light.