Empathetic design is a concept that can be applied to any building type, anywhere. Empathy has implications in all aspects of design from scale, to materials, to organization and circulation. Empathetic design needs to adapt to the people it is built for, and the context it is built in. It is understanding of the needs and concerns of its occupants and provides a bridge to connect people to space. This project explores the concept of empathetic design as applied to a TRANSITIONAL SHELTER. This shelter is so named because it provides more than a temporary place to sleep. It is not only an empathetic design, but also an empathetic program, understanding of the difficulties, struggles, and desires of people in desperate need of employment and housing. The program and spaces cater to functions that help the homeless get back on their feet. These services include counseling, day care, and job training. It is a safe haven for those who feel they are not understood, or have been forgotten. It is a welcoming retreat from the streets that not only provides a warm, dry place to sleep, but the tools necessary for these people to regain their lives and rejoin society.
Loiselle, Anne Marie, "Empathetic Design: Transitional Shelter" (2008). Architecture Theses. Paper 27.