First, imagine you are a client looking at a floorplan of a freestanding emergency department and trying to get a good feel for the effectiveness of adjacencies, or getting a good sense of how it might feel to work in the space and whether a different configuration might work better. You might be able to say that you don’t think it is quite right yet, but it may be difficult to articulate a better solution. And once you come up with some potential options, you have to wait for a revised drawing to see if it really accomplishes what you had hoped.
Now imagine that you are given physical building blocks, one each for the functions that are actually required for your facility. Imagine literally moving each around until you’ve created your own, customized FED that works for your needs and within the constraints of your particular site. That’s exactly what we’ve been able to do by using 3D printing to develop blocks for each independent FED function. Now clients can truly be “hands-on” in the design process. This approach allows clients to better visualize complicated spaces and assemblies than they can in a 3D, onscreen simulated environment. Even better, it allows them to work with with a physical, 3D, “modular” model to arrive at an optimal solution efficiently and effectively.
From our experience in working with 3D printing, we've learned: As long as you plan from the very start to create a computer-generated 3D model - it's almost as easy as ABC!