Children’s National Hospital Wins AIA NoVA Award

Children’s National Hospital Molecular Imaging Center received Award of Merit.

The Children’s National Hospital Molecular Imaging Center was honored with an AIA Northern Virginia (NoVA) Award of Merit. The jury praised the project’s attention to detail and meticulous execution of concept.

The Molecular Imaging Center is located on the second floor of Children’s National Hospital in Washington, D.C.

As visitors move through the space, multiple layers of sensory design—including lower light levels, depth representation, and rhythmic light movement—form a cohesive and immersive experience. For example, changing color blocks convey depth, while lights and environmental graphics mimic the pulsation of bioluminescent sea creatures.

Light was a driving factor in the design, tied to both procedural necessity and as a calming distraction as patients “dive” into the world of bioluminescent creatures and feel immersed within the sea. Naturally creative, children interact with the space. An art waiting room is in the middle of a kelp forest, while a detailed entrance mural encourages scientifically curious children to learn about bioluminescence.

Throughout the space, the calming environment minimizes the anxiety of lengthy technical procedures while instilling confidence.

About the Award

The AIA Northern Virginia Design Awards program honors local design and architecture throughout the region. The awards demonstrate the value of the architecture profession and the service to those who will live, work, and play in the places designed.

For more information, visit the 2020 AIA NoVA Awards.