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2012 Design Showcase

May 15, 2012
by Dennis Grantham, Editor-in-Chief
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This year's projects blend inspiration, vision, value, and practicality
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I was honored to participate in the roundtable discussions that concluded the 2012 Behavioral Healthcare Design for Health and Human Services Showcase. And, did I get an education—a fascinating three-hour debate about what a dozen projects say about the practice of architecture and the practice of behavioral health. The debate explored a great diversity of projects, including:

  • Large-scale psychiatric hospital construction and renovations
  • Renovations and additions to institutions and organizations serving adults and children
  • Construction and remodeling of residential mental health, addiction treatment, and long-term dementia care facilities.
  • New multi-purpose community “crisis centers” that provide  23-hour crisis stabilization,  jail diversion and sobering services, short term hospitalizations and addiction treatment programs.

While four of this year’s projects earned special recognition from our judges, all 12 projects displayed in the Showcase (which can be viewed here in the digital issue) were selected on their merits from a wider field of entries based on the scores and opinions of the judges. Interestingly, while one of two projects with the largest budgets was honored, all other honors went to projects with considerably smaller budgets. So, regardless of size or budget, each project has lessons to share and a story to tell. To jump directly to each project, click on the corresponding link found to the right.

Citations of Merit

Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Stone Institute of Psychiatry (Chicago)

St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton, West 5th Campus (Hamilton, ON)

Honorable Mentions

Lutherwood Children's Mental Health Centre (Waterloo, ON)

Lewis Wellness Center at Fountain House (New York)

Other competitors

Ottawa Withdrawal Management Centre (Ottawa, ON)

Cumberland Hospital for Children & Adolescents (New Kent, Va.)

Baycare Health System St. Joseph's Hospital Recovery Center (Tampa, Fla.)

Caritas (Slippery Rock Township, Pa.)

Santa Cruz Behavioral Health (Santa Cruz, Calif.)

The Meadows, Universal Health Care Systems of Delaware Inc. (Centre Hall, Pa.)

Oregon State Hospital (Salem, Ore.)

Minnesota Veterans Home-Fergus Falls (Fergus Falls, Minn.)

Note that our judges recognized that a facility’s purpose often imposes significant constraints on its design. In the words of one, “We don’t want to judge a forensic/detox facility in the same way we do a psychiatric hospital.” Indeed. To the intoxicant diverted from jail and the cop who is spared hours of booking and court time, even the spartan confines of a public sobering facility take on a beauty of their own. 

The judges

The staff of Behavioral Healthcare magazine thanks our jury’s five distinguished panelists:

Gayle Anthony, EDAC, LEED AP, is a consultant with nearly 20 years of experience in the planning and design of inpatient and outpatient behavioral health facilities, acute-care hospitals and academic medical centers in the U.S. and abroad. She is founder and president of Healthcare Space Planning Consultants, LLC (Memphis, Tenn.), a consulting firm specializing in space programming, design and layouts for healthcare construction and renovation projects.

Howard Gershon, FACHE, is a founding principal with New Heights Group (Santa Fe, N.M.). He offers more than 35 years of experience as a healthcare consultant, specializing in strategic planning, market research, program development and facility development for behavioral health providers throughout the United States.

James M. Hunt, AIA, is president of Behavioral Health Facility Consulting, LLC (Topeka, Kan.), and a practicing architect. Co-author of the Design Guide for the Built Environment of Behavioral Health Facilities, he works with architects, psychiatric hospitals, and behavioral health facilities to improve safety. He served as served as director of facilities management at the Menninger Clinic for 20 years.

Jason Nordling, AIA. In more than a decade at BWBR (Minneapolis, Minn.), Nordling has forged relationships with major health care systems including Avera Health and Fairview Health Services. His experience with behavioral health facility design includes the groundbreaking Avera Behavioral Health Center in Sioux Falls, S.D., and the Gundersen Lutheran Health System Behavioral Health Center in La Crosse, Wis.

Gail Sterling, FIIDA, AAHID, is a principal and the Director of Interiors with WHR Architects (Houston), where she specializes in healthcare projects that utilize evidence-based design. Her expertise in interior design includes master plan development; interior finishes, furniture specification and selection; architectural and interior design; and preparation of construction documents.

Design Showcase highlights

Psychiatric hospital construction and renovation projects include HOK Architects’ $11.4 million conversion/remodel/renovation of Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s Stone Institute of Psychiatry in Chicago, which transformed an available hospital  building to this new use.