The new CentraCare Health Plaza campus is the future of the St. Cloud Hospital. Initially, the campus will emerge as a Center for Children and Family-Based Services and evolve as an integrated continuum of health programs.

Flexibility is the key to the building design. Two large blocks of clinical space articulated by three public circulation pavilions comprise the building chassis, but additional pavilions and clinical blocks can be added as the building grows. All building elements can expand vertically, and the clinical blocks can each expand independently. The design of the campus also allows for the addition of independent structures.

The evolution of the core facility will be possible without compromising or modifying the initial investment. The maximum capacity of the campus will approach 1.5 million square feet when fully developed, including provisions for parking. While the campus could actually support a more intensive land-use plan, the “collegial” character and natural enhancements are considered sacrosanct.

The long-range Campus Plan addresses the eventual relocation of Inpatient Services to the campus. The future patient tower will have a panoramic view of the Sauk River, overlooking fitness trails along the river's edge, developed in collaboration with the city. The Campus Plan is designed to embrace the vision and values of the organization, and to expand and evolve into a totally integrative center of health and wellness for the entire region


A significant aspect of the project is the relationship between the building and its natural context. Woodlands, prairie and river come together on this site, providing inspiration for the design themes for the three pavilions. The ultimate goal is to create a place where nature plays a role in the healing process.

The tower and lantern provide a distant and comforting light on a vast prairie. Serving as a constant reminder of the distinctive purpose and character of this place, it will become a new icon for the campus. It is an inviting gesture to the surrounding community.

PROJECT CATEGORY New Construction (completed January 2002)

CHIEF ADMINISTRATOR John Frobenius, (320) 251-2700

FIRM Hammel, Green and Abrahamson, Inc. (HGA), (612) 758-4000

DESIGN TEAM Rick Hintz, AIA, Principal and Architect; Darrell Carlson, AIA, Project Manager; Amy Douma, Planner/Designer; Dan Polachek, AIA, Project Designer