A challenge was set forth, a design team was selected, and the adventure began. The goal was to design an efficient, smoothly functioning hospital embedded with the grace and comfort of a luxury hotel. Driving every decision was the belief that the patient experience is paramount.

Emory Johns Creek Hospital is located in a rapidly growing suburb of Atlanta. This community of well-informed, savvy consumers set high expectations for their healthcare provider. To design “an outpatient facility with beds” was an exciting challenge to exceed this community's expectations by providing a full array of inpatient and outpatient medical services on one campus.

The campus master plan accommodates for both future hospital growth and medical office buildings, including the attached Physician's Plaza. These MOBs provide outpatient services that complement the hospital, providing a convenient, seamless transition for patients. The precast colonnade and outpatient lobby create a smoothly curving circulation spine, connecting the hospital and MOB. Along this colonnade, the separate entrances are announced with translucent canopies, creating hierarchy and dramatic, recognizable entrances.

As visitors enter through the main canopy, an interior bridge guides them into the lobby. A portion of this inviting lobby opens up into a three-story atrium. From there, visitors can quickly orient themselves through the use of wayfinding aids, electronic kiosks, and information desks, easily navigating the simple connections between spaces.

Offering diverse care, outpatient services are located conveniently off the main lobby. Maintaining patient privacy was integral to the outpatient design. This need for privacy inspired a separate discharge canopy. Through this canopy, patients are able to leave the facility discreetly, avoiding the public lobby.

The desire to exceed the high expectations of the community also shaped the design of patient rooms. Each room features electronic bedside charting and amenities such as abundant natural light. In addition, the rooms have comfortable seating, sleeping, and working areas for family members. Like the rest of the facility, these rooms are designed to maximize space and promote quality patient care.

Project category: New construction (completed November 2006)

Chief administrator: Tom Gilbert, CEO, (678) 474-7003

Firm: Thomas, Miller and Partners, LLC, (615) 377-9773

Design team: Marc Rowland, AIA, ACHA, Partner-in-Charge; John A. Street, Jr., AIA, Project Architect; Michelle Goodman, LEED AP, Project Coordinator; Heather Carlson, IIDA, Interior Designer

Photography: ©2007 Rion Rizzo/Creative Sources

Total building area (sq. ft.): 281,589

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $255

Total construction cost (excluding land): $71,912,406

Through the collaboration of the owner, contractor, and design team, the challenge to create “an outpatient facility with beds” while providing a wide array of medical services to exceed the expectations of this Atlanta suburb has been realized. Emory Johns Creek Hospital is a strong example of a hospital providing attentive, state-of-the-art care within an elegant, patient-focused environment.