Building Design for Animals

A Look Back: Cornell University Small Animal Community Practice

A new stand-alone Community Practice Service building for the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University’s Ithaca, New York campus.

Working with Cornell University, BDA has designed many projects for their veterinary school program and for other institutions they’ve partnered with around the globe. The Cornell University Small Animal Community Practice project was to expand and relocate the Community Practice Service program to a facility outside, but adjacent to, the Cornell University Hospital for Animals.

A teaching hospital, it was design to represent a more typical Veterinary Clinic experience.

Partnering with HOLT Architects who served as prime on this endeavor, BDA brought veterinary architecture expertise to the design of this brand-new facility. Built as a real-world veterinary practice experience for Cornell’s students, the clinic is also a fear-free and stress-free environment for the pets and their owners.

The Community Practice offers primary care to dogs and cats in the Ithaca area. This service is run by fourth year students and overseen by faculty veterinarians. The facility provides veterinary technician training in primary care and practice management, with clinical and administrative spaces designed to accommodate the doctors, students and of course patients.

At 10,000 SF, the new building has 5 exam rooms including a feline only exam and a large exam. There are 2 surgery rooms with adjacent pre-op and surgery exam, as well as surgery storage and a sterile hallway which leads into each surgery room.

Two dental workstations support cleaning, exams, x-rays and surgical tooth extractions.

For feline patients there is also a separate feline waiting area and feline only wards to further help ease the stress and anxiety of visiting cats.

A treatment area large enough to accommodate doctors and observing/participating students is located off of the exam rooms and there are an inhouse lab and a pharmacy adjacent to treatment.

Support spaces include offices, two conference rooms, a break area, storage spaces, and touch down/collaboration areas. A feature of this facility and Cornell’s program is giving students training in specialty clinical skills, but also experience in handling the day-to-day measures of running a veterinary practice. It is all hands-on training to prepare future veterinarians for running their own practice someday.

With well-lit spaces featuring natural daylight, beautiful but also practical flooring, and the infrastructure to provide exemplary service and learning opportunities, the AAHA Accredited Cornell University Small Animal Community Practice is a fine addition to Cornell’s highly rated veterinary school program.

For more on the Cornell University Small Animal Community Practice take a look at this article from Cornell’s website published after their grand opening in 2018.