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Design Connecticut: What the Constitution State has to Offer

Spotlight on Connecticut: Twelve Fun Facts

Emerging Leader Profile: Featuring Josh Cunningham
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 Design Connecticut 
What the Constitution State has to Offer

April's focus highlights the talents and recent accomplishments of projects and firms in Connecticut.  As varied as its geography, cities and towns, the design firms in the state vary from small and large to modern and traditional.  Below is just a small sampling of what this great state has to offer.  

A recent IIDA NE Design Awards Winner Amenta Emma Architects, recently completed The Burnham Family Memory Care Residence at Avery Heights in Hartford.  This project gave a new home to 20 secured assisted living neighborhoods for seniors suffering from dementia.  The interior design focused on making the most of natural light, warm residential familiarity, as well as a palette to support health issues.

Tecton Architects created a state of the art simulation teaching facility for clinicians and students to train at Hartford Hospital's Center for Education, Stimulation and Innovation (CESI).  A multi year occupied renovation, has a mix of labs, training, and classroom facilities supporting nearly 11,000 regional and national medical professionals that visit each year.

SLAM Collaborative transformed Pierre Toussaint Hall, a residential life complex at Sacred Heart University.  This building serves as the first component of a residential village that will provide additional on-campus housing.  Community living and relationship building are at the core of this project that gives 171 beds to the campus.

Pirie Associates created a woodland experience for Denali's new retail location in Trumbull.  Nearly all the woodland materials were created from reclaimed or recycled products.  Denali's mission, to keep their connecting people to the nature, is reinforced by the stores thoughtful design.

Amy Hirsch Interior Design has a residential style that calls attention to detail with a mix of traditional and modern.  

Spotlight on Connecticut
Twelve Fun Facts

From the depths of the "predominantly useless information" category, here are twelve fun facts about New England state Connecticut. Prepare to dominate at your next trivia session with the following arsenal of Connecticut little-known facts.
  • It’s illegal to cross the street while walking on your hands in Hartford.
  • Connecticut is home to the first hamburger (1895), Polaroid camera (1934), helicopter (1939) and color TV (1948).
  • USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear submarine, was launched in New London, CT in 1954.
  • Connecticut is home to the oldest U.S. newspaper still being published: The Hartford Courant, established in 1764.
  • Louis’ Lunch (home of the first hamburger) is still in business today in New Haven. The original hamburger consisted of grilled ground steak between two slices of toast.
  • In Waterbury, CT no beautician can hum, whistle, or sing while working on a customer.
  • The first woman to receive a US patent was CT native Mary Dixon Kies in 1809 for her unique method of weaving straw with silk to create beautiful hats.
  • The first lollipop-making machine was invented in New Haven in 1908. George Smith named it after a popular race horse.
  • Opened in 1771 in Salisbury, CT the Scoville Memorial Library is the oldest public library in the United States.
  • Lego is headquartered in Enfield, CT and sponsors a 5k in October each year with fantastic giveaways to participants. It sells out minutes after registration opens.
  • PEZ candy is made in the city of Orange, CT.
        And last, but certainly not least:
  • In order for a pickle to be considered a pickle in Connecticut, it must bounce.
IIDA New England Providence: From School to the Workforce
4.16.18 // The IIDA NE Providence City Center is happy to host a student event to inform students on IIDANE events and programs that cater to students.

2018 Green RI
5.03.18 // IIDA NE Providence City Center, AIAri, and RIASLA will once again join together to host the 2018 Green RI Sustainable Product Showcase.

26th Annual IIDA NE Business Leaders Breakfast
5.24.18 // You are invited to attend the 26th Annual IIDA New England Business Leaders Breakfast, hosted at the Westin Boston Waterfront.

IIDA NE Providence Business + Brews
5.31.18 // Join IIDA NE Providence City Center and AIA Rhode Island for their membership appreciation event, Business + Brews.
Did you know, the first telephone book ever issued was published by the New Haven District Telephone Company in February 1878 and contained only 50 names.
Do you have an idea that you would like to share with the design community or see highlighted here in The Wire? Send your ideas to

Josh Cunningham

Company: Packard Design
Concentration: Workplace
College/University: Wentworth
Year(s) of Graduation: 2014
If you had to describe yourself in three words, they would be...: Kind, Adaptable, Imaginative
What is your strongest personal quality:  My Flexibility
What was your first thought when you woke up this morning?: I can do this!
What is your favorite type of music, band or musician?: Whatever I can sing to, dance to or dream to.
You've been given access to a time machine; where and when would you travel to?: Professionally, I would be very interested in seeing how Cliffside castles were constructed without modern technology. Personally, I think it would be interesting to go to the future and see what I have to look forward to, or well beyond at what I would otherwise never see.
What is your best childhood memory?: Getting an opposing gender specific playset that I desperately wanted.
Lesson learned that has benefited you most in your career:  Accept constructive criticism as an opportunity to grow, not be defeated.
Why did you choose to become an Interior Designer?: To make a difference in people’s everyday lives.
What is one goal you'd like to accomplish in your lifetime?: To design a yacht/ship.
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