Our Purpose-Built Space

How do we use environment to support people with MCI?

Our space creates a flexible, safe, engaging, personalized, and evidence-based built environment that enhances function for the program and for people with MCI. A functional environment is one that enables independence, easy wayfinding, social engagement, and personal empowerment. To do this, we use layout, lighting and sound design, wayfinding, signage, and other design features to optimize the environment for our Members.

Our team of environment experts help:

  1. Lead the design of the unique Cognitive Empowerment Center at Executive Park based on research evidence and ongoing participation by the Patient and Family Advisory Board, staff and other experts. The Center is a nature-inspired design that is open, easy to navigate, and comfortable for Members, and provides unique healthy lighting, among many other features. Our team of environmental experts help guide the Center's ongoing improvement based on feedback from Members and ongoing research.
  2. Support research into the design of homes for people with MCI. Make recommendations for home design to facilitate independent living and empowerment.
  3. Design, conduct and disseminate research that helps build lessons for others from the Cognitive Empowerment Program.
  4. Collaborate with our multidisciplinary team and other external partners to understand how Cognitive Empowerment Center programs and technology can be best supported by built environments in our unique space and at home.

How did we create the environment?

Our team of environmental experts use evidence-based design, relying on the literature and data gathered through the program to inform the space’s design and propose guidelines for ongoing improvement of the center, other similar centers, and home design for people with MCI. This includes extensive research on lighting and sound environment design and how these features can be used to maximize well-being, functionality and comfort. Our design process includes the Members as co-designers of the space whenever possible using methods such as image reaction studies and board games to elicit sharing of perceptions and experiences.

Members are central to the design process and ongoing design improvements in the Cognitive Empowerment Program; all work is done collaboratively and with members in mind. Some of our recent and ongoing work includes how our programming and social interactions can best be supported by the physical space of the center during face-to-face programming; how the space is used and social distancing is observed amid COVID-19; how homes can best support safety and personal care; how light and sound effect sleep; and many other topics.