Washington, D.C.— Array Architects announced that Senior Interior Designer Clairanne Pesce has earned the WELL Accredited Professional (AP) designation, placing her among less than one percent of interior designers and architects nationwide to be recognized as an expert in healthy building strategies.
“Clairanne has always been an essential part of Array’s sustainable design practice leadership, leveraging her significant experience with LEED and GBCI,” Alex Berman, Array Architects’ DC Studio Director said. “It is only natural that she adds WELL to her repertoire, and we are delighted Clairanne has achieved this distinction.”
WELL overlays scientific research, public health data and building information to identify how building professionals can optimize the built environment for human beings to thrive. While the LEED standard helps to create greener buildings, WELL establishes guidance for health-conscious buildings that are designed to aid healing, productivity and overall well-being. The standard provides criteria for features across seven categories, including air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. Unique to WELL, it is the first interior built environment certification that sends an assessor to experience the space post occupancy.
“Human beings weren’t meant to live in these very mechanical, stark environments,” Pesce said. “We now have an evidence-based approach to wellness, whereas 20 years ago we were mostly using anecdotal evidence.”
Pesce sites WELL’s combination of scientific data and architectural information as key to the innovative strategies they present in the standard. WELL helps designers to establish features inherent in the built environment that allow people to attain fundamental health requirements without going beyond their workplaces, homes or community centers. Features might include beautiful stair design and less prominent elevators to encourage 30 minutes of exercise per day, intelligent lighting that can help regulate sleep/wake cycles and a certification of the fundamental water quality found at the site prior to the installation of any filtration system.
“When you understand the level of stress that people experience when they enter a hospital environment, it truly underscores the importance of the WELL standard,” Pesce said. “If we can start to mitigate patient stress as well as the level of stress the staff go under, then we’re minimizing risk and placing people back into their everyday with a little more health in their life.”
While the development of a healthcare-specific WELL rating system is currently underway, the material science underlying the standard can be applied to any project. Among the many features of WELL that can benefit health facilities, smart lighting and high-quality air are two of the most notable. Harvard University’s cognitive study has shown that doubling the amount of outside air within a building, in combination with minimal CO2 and VOCs, can lead to an eight percent increase in worker productivity when compared to a conventional building’s air quality.
Pesce’s expertise in sustainable and health-conscious design has led to her participation in several panels and projects. She was a panelist at Interior Design magazine’s Health and Wellness roundtable in March, where she joined thought leaders in design to discuss ways to overcome roadblocks to health-forward design. While many projects undertaken at Array have benefitted from Pesce’s design savvy, a few notable institutions for which she’s delivered inspired designs include Children’s National Medical Center, the Department of Defense, Kaiser Permanente and Baptist Health South Florida.
Recognized as a leader in healthcare facility design, consulting and technology, Array offers knowledge-based, data-informed services, including planning, architecture, interior design, transformation and asset advisory services. Using Lean as a foundation for a unique process-led approach, our deliverables use data and technology to leverage real-time patient and real estate market trends required by today’s healthcare organizations. Our devotion to a healthcare-exclusive practice springs from our belief in the power of design and technology to improve patient outcomes, maximize operational efficiencies, and increase staff satisfaction.