Established as Cleveland Society for the Blind in 1906, the Cleveland Sight Center (as it is known as today) provides rehabilitation, social and independent living services to Northeast Ohio residents of all ages who are blind or have low vision.
In 2012, Cleveland Sight Center (CSC) renovated its headquarters, and as a result, became a model of accessible buildings in the United States, using color, textures and other cues in the building’s design. Harrington Electric was proud to be part of the A.M. Higley construction team. Harrington provided all electrical, technology, fire alarm and security work associated with this large scale renovation.
Construction Manager: The Albert M. Higley Company Architectural Design: Vocon Partners LLC Architect Consultants, Electrical: Westlake, Reed, Leskosky
Benefitting Clients and Staff
The center’s main building was designed in 1964 by the Cleveland firm of Outcault, Gunther, Rode & Bonebrake. Simple brick expansions in the 1970s and 1980s tripled the size of the facility to 75,000 square feet. Although some of the clients couldn’t see the changes, rearranging and altering the original structure benefited both clients and employees.
Solving Sound Issues
The renovation was designed to address issues with areas like the large meeting room where the high ceilings, considered desirable by those with eyesight, proved to be an acoustical nightmare for the center’s clients because the lack of sound reflections inside made the space difficult to navigate.
Aside from important details like large print and automatic light switches, the new floor plan has expanded client services to make them more accessible.
Simpler User Navigation
The renovation was intended to increase the center’s capacity, change the culture of the organization and improve the center’s access. The new layout, which used to be a maze, now has straight lines for easier navigation.
A Sense of Orientation
The renovation created a clean, simple design that uses contrasting materials, acoustics and simple planning to give users a sense of orientation through touch, sound and spatial organization.