2019-09 i Organic Blocks at Pittsburgh International Airport

Inspired by an employee’s son (Presley Rudge, 4 years-old), Pittsburgh International Airport has created a one-of-a-kind sensory-friendly room so that the experience of any child or adult with autism at the airport can be positive. This quiet but impressive room was named after this lovely 8-year-old boy, as Presley’s Room.

Currently, autism affects about 60 out of 10,000 children worldwide. It is a developmental disorder that usually begins in the first three years of life, and it gets worse in places with a lot of noise, light, movement, and people, that is precisely the case of any airport.

Presley’s room, which is entirely sound-proof, contains a number of elements that makes of this a safe place for anyone with the autism spectrum: soft colors, lowlights, bubble tubes with calming lights, padded seats, rockers chairs, textured walls, bathrooms with adult-sized changing tables that can be moved up and down, and private areas in which families can decompress before flights.

The Hayes Design Group Architects, responsible for the project, described it on their Instagram profile page as "one-of-a-kind, sensory-friendly room to fruition at Pittsburgh International Airport! Presley’s Place, located in Concourse A of the Airside Terminal, is so much more than just a quiet room for airport passengers. It’s a world-class, one-of-a-kind 1,500 sq. ft. sensory-friendly experience. It is a place for kids and adults with autism and other sensory-processing issues, and their families, designed to help them to decompress and calm their nerves while traveling."

Therefore, MURATTO and its US partner (Sustainable Materials) have the privilege of being part of this inspiring story because the carefully chosen material to line the walls of this unique room was the ORGANIC BLOCKS COLLECTION, Senses and Drop. In addition to providing the room with a modern and functional design, the curvilinear forms of Senses and Drop convey calm and harmony, which allied to the natural properties of the product (cork) are determining factors for the well-being of the visitors of this space.