This new six-story hospital includes 220 beds, two four-story medical office buildings with a connecting atrium, and a seven-story parking structure for 1,464 cars. This 21st-century hospital was designed with an emphasis on patients and their families. A clear circulation system orients patients, staff, and visitors from first entry to the site. Overhead pedestrian bridges glow at night and link the entire complex. A central courtyard with a water feature, plazas, and seating also connects the complex on the ground level, providing opportunities for visitors and staff to interact in the outdoors.

The hospital building includes two L-shaped patient towers over a two-story base. Each of the top floors contains 64 private patient rooms in clusters of 16. This organization allows flexibility in how patient populations are distributed within the nursing floors. Each room includes a private bathroom and furnishings to accommodate overnight stays by family members. The patient towers are angled to maximize views of the adjacent natural habitat and Mount Hood. The design also creates south-facing outdoor terraces off the cafeteria, chapel, and conference rooms.

At entry to the site, the primary view of the hospital features a curved façade with large punched windows into the patient rooms and treatment spaces. The main lobby is a two-story space with escalators connecting the second-floor bridge level to the first floor. The exterior materials of brick, glass, metal, and stone extend into the main public spaces as interior finishes.

Natural materials and a warm color palette of natural colors are featured throughout the hospital, with special attention to waiting areas and the women's floor in labor and postpartum rooms. Natural light was used at every opportunity, including in the operating rooms, where relights allow daylight into the space via the hallways. ZGF partnered with artists from the Pacific Northwest on commissioned art for the new hospital.

Project category: New construction (completed August 2005)

Chief administrator:

Jonathan Avery, Administrator, (360) 487-1000

Firm: Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership, (503) 224-3860

Design team: Robert Frasca, FAIA, Principal Designer; Kelly Davis, AIA, Project Manager; Sue Ann Barton, AIA, Medical Designer; Hugh Campbell, AIA, Senior Medical Planner; Donna Ford, IIDA, Senior Interior Designer

Photography: © Eckert & Eckert

Total building area (sq. ft.): 468,000 (hospital only)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $252 (hospital only)

Total construction cost (excluding land): $118,000,000 (hospital only)


Legacy Health System is fundamentally supportive of sustainable practices. Of critical importance are indoor air quality for patients and staff, recycling, and the reduction of waste products produced by the hospital. Elements of sustainable, high-performance design at the new Legacy Salmon Creek Hospital contribute to a healing environment, enhance staff recruitment and retention, and help conserve natural resources. Indigenous landscaping, pervious surface treatments, natural storm detention design, and sensitive site lighting have all been incorporated as sustainable design features.