Healthcare is changing. Baby boomers are aging and demanding top-quality medical care closer to home. Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center is prepared with its expansion of six stories and a lower level.

The expansion nearly doubles the square footage of the hospital. A new entrance, emergency, radiology, critical care, obstetrics/gynecology, chapel, and gift shop round out the first three levels. The remaining levels shelled in during the expansion provide for future projects, including medical, postsurgical, and pediatric rooms along with a cafeteria, medical records area, and conference rooms.

By improving patient flow, privacy, and efficiency and adding hotel-like amenities, the project provides patients, family, and staff the benefits of a new hospital with private rooms. The new tower includes a dedicated area for low-acuity emergency patients, acuity-adaptable critical care rooms, decentralized nurses' stations, and private patient rooms. The infrastructure allows the patient tower to adapt to changes and expansion. The result is a hospital ready for the future.

Project category: Addition (completed January 2005)

Chief administrator: Raymond W. Snowden, President and CEO, (812) 482-0673

Firm: BSA LifeStructures, (317) 819-7878

Design team: Richard A. Fetz, AIA, Principal-in-Charge; Robert A. Boellner, PE, Project Engineer; James E. Schroeder, RA, Project Architect; C.B. Neudecker, Construction Administration (BSA LifeStructures); Dawn C. McDonald, Interior Designer (Maregatti Interiors)

Photography: Dan Francis, Mardan Photography

Total building area (sq. ft.): 192,760 (new); 5,000 (renovation)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $139 (new); $104 (renovation)

Total construction cost (excluding land): $26,880,000 (new); $520,000 (renovation)

Consistent colors and design elements of brick, glass, and concrete respect the existing facility and visually break up the massing of the tower. A new design element—a cross that glows at night—enhances wayfinding to the Catholic hospital's new entrance.

According to Ray Snowden, the hospital's president and CEO, “Our new patient tower positions Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center well for future growth so area residents continue receiving high-quality care in a comfortable environment close to home and family.”