Phoenix Children's Hospital PHOENIX, AZ
Project category: Remodel/Renovation (completed May 2002)
Chief administrator: Jean Jensen, Interim CEO, (602) 546-0400
Firm: Karlsberger Companies, (614) 461-9500
Design team: Joseph F. Kuspan, AIA, VP, Senior Architectural Designer; John J. Plappert, AIA, ACHA, VP, Senior Architectural Designer; Linda M. Gabel, IIDA, Senior Associate, Director of Interior Design; Daniel J. Clements III, Senior Associate, Director of Graphic Design; Jerry A. Smith, ASLA, Senior Landscape Architect
Photography: © Gary Knight + Associates, Inc. (except “before” photo)
Total building area (GSF): 38,040 (new); 351,987 (renovation)
Construction cost/sq. ft.: $101
Total cost (excluding land): $39,300,000 (construction)
A children's healing environment that celebrates the sun, the desert, and the architecture of the Southwest was built upon the framework of a former adult general hospital campus. Because the campus was disorganized by random additions over the years, the key task was to focus and reorient both the site and the hospital.
The new campus plan relocates the main entrance drive to a slower-moving residential street, giving a better sense of arrival to the campus, as well as easy access to a new parking structure. The separation of emergency traffic creates a new plaza of low stucco walls that define landscape, water features, and seating areas. This terraced plaza allows vehicle-free pedestrian movement between the hospital and the outpatient buildings.
The broad paving bands of the entry plaza carry into the concourse—a literal spine of the hospital, containing amenities such as dining, the family resource center, conference spaces, and waiting areas. Primary destinations and decision-making points are highlighted by colorful pueblo walls and linear skylights that have been incised into the roof to cast strong patterns of light. The colors and textures of the Southwest landscape are integrated in careful harmony to create both serene intensive-care spaces and vibrant public and children's play spaces.
The irregular, two-story massing at the entry area is painted in a palette of bold colors that identify all public entrances on the campus. The pueblo-like assemblages reduce the scale of the buildings—a strategy consistently employed throughout the project and entirely appropriate in a children's healthcare environment. All public entrances are landmarked by a trio of cactus-inspired masts, flying flags designed by area children, and tower forms in the vivid red and purple of the hospital's identity. The newly constructed light tower at the main entry is a celebration of sunlight and water—a slowly changing space meant to cleanse the mind of an anxious child or parent.