Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Schematic: Cat Atrium Interior

Before I list the details of this drawing, I would like to explore the design possibilities of the cat atrium.

Q. There is current argument that shelter animals should each have their own room, inside.
A1. First I would like to remind one that this is a shelter, where operations function primarily from volunteer workers. Because this shelter is no longer owned by the county, is privately owned, the shelter does not receive financial help from the government and therefore must rely on goodwill, donors, and sponsors.

A2. Second, I would like to stress the relationship of an unorganized facility with its nonfunctional design that promotes a poorly maintained & unhealthy facility.

A3. One plus Two equals the Third, having individual rooms for each animal is ideal and luxurious, but simplicity and economical is the primary goal. Also keep in mind by having individual rooms and incorporating the cleaning staff circulation rounds...this could potentially eliminate the ever so important window factor!! Windows could be compromised for storage and clean up space...

Now I am starting to question myself. I'm not sure which is the best answer...individual "cages" that have the opportunity to explore into the atrium jungle with other cats...or individual rooms that house a group of cats?

Perhaps my best solution is to meet with my contact, Dana, at the GCAS and ask her opinion.

To be further investigated...

"I am now inside the cat atrium, and my direct line of sight is a miniature atrium housed with cat trees and toys. The cats seem to be having fun and are highly stimulated with each other and with the view. Looking past the atrium, the view extends to some trees with birdhouses and bird feeders—no wonder the cats are so excited! On a beautiful day like today, the atrium window can be open to the fresh outdoors…and that’s about one inch closer the cats can be to those birds! Beyond the miniature cat atrium and surrounding cages is this textured reed grass wall. An excellent choice of material considering cats love to sink their claws into reeds, and it helps for me too as it absorbs sound and has a nice earthy and farm-like feel of hay mows."

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