Collection by Aaron Britt

Maggie's Center by Zaha Hadid


Whilst in Edinburgh, I managed to slip outside of town for a bit to check out Zaha Hadid's first built project in the UK: her 2006 design for a Maggie's Center in Kirkcaldy in Fife, which also happens to be the home district of recently resigned PM Gordon Brown. There are a serveral Maggie's Centers across the UK and they offer emotional, spiritual, and psychological aid to those diagnosed with cancer and their families. A small army of star architects have leant their skills to Maggie's cause including Frank Gehry, and I was thrilled to get to visit a fine intersection of good design and goodwill. Have a look at the slideshow to see what I saw.

Viewed from the front, the Center is quite a break with the grounds of the hospital where it sits.
One of the best bits about this Maggie's Center is that you never feel as though you're in a medical facility per se....
Here you can see the triangle motif from the exterior moved inside into the living room style space.
There are a handful of impromptu seating areas around the space (which itself can't be more than the size of a small...
I had a nice chat, as well as a cup of coffee and a stellar shortbread biscuit, with Ruth McCabe (left) of Maggie's...
Here's a closer view of the kitchen. And if ever a place embodied tea and sympathy it's Maggie's Center.
A colorful bookshelf sits just behind the table and actually mirrors the colorful stacks of tea in the kitchen space.
Once you pass the kitchen area the circulation curves around back toward the living room space.
Past the computer nook is this curved wall of pamphlets, books, and literature about cancer, coping, and surviving.
One of Hadid's design goals was to make the space as flexible as possible, so though there are two private rooms where...
The terrace overlooks a grassy gully and the setback allows lots of natural light.
Here's another view of the terrace pulled back a bit.
Here you can see the massive construction going on at Victoria Hospital just behind Maggie's Center.
I snapped this photo from the walkway up to the building.
Here's that triangular motif again.
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