Health Central was designed within the parameters of a 30-year master plan, which details the expansion of the hospital, medical offices, and ancillary components in an integrated health park. Water features, ponds, fountains, trees, and landscaping, as well as adjacent wetlands and other eco-sensitive areas, were an important aspect of site planning and were integrated into the expansion as an integral element to the patient and family experience.

The hospital expansion continues the original integrated hospital-physician concept and includes 105,000 square feet of new construction and 45,000 square feet of renovated space. As in the original design, the expansion was required to have all departments “touch” the staff-only vertical (elevator) core for easy access, operational efficiency, and wayfinding.

The Health Central physician-hospital integration concept had to be maintained. The expansion supports all the services necessary to care for families and patients, while addressing the needs of staff and visitors. This is accomplished by connecting the expansion to the existing atrium, a gathering place that offers food and other retail services, effective wayfinding, and a connection to all areas of the medical offices and hospital.

Another design requirement was creating high visual impact from the highway. The buildings were designed to project a new building form for the expansion of the patient towers, so that “forced perspectives” would draw passersby to the facility. Color and form provide impact during the day; at night, specialty lighting emphasizes the facility as patient friendly for after-hours admissions.

A new vertical tower was constructed, housing nursing units for CCU, pediatrics, and OB; their existing third-floor location was converted to a medical/surgical nursing unit.

The integrated nature of the facility required a structural design that addressed complicated issues, such as the vertical stacking of hospital departments, their adjacencies to medical offices, and patient and public flows.

High ceilings and large windows were used in patient rooms to increase the amount of natural daylighting and the feeling of openness as part of the patient environment, so that each room was perceived as larger and, thus, more comfortable. The design of the patient unit reduced nursing travel distances and improved visibility of the patient rooms.

The client also required that all services were to remain operational during construction.

Project category: New construction & Remodel/Renovation (completed April 2003)

Chief administrator: Richard Irwin, President & CEO, (407) 296-1801

Firm: Jonathan Bailey Associates, (469) 227-3900

Design team: Jonathan D. Bailey, NCARB, NDICQ, AIA, President & CEO (Jonathan Bailey Associates); Randal L. Pool, President (BR+A Florida); Richard Zinser, Principal (Zinser Grossman); Barry Morton, CEO (Robins and Morton); Edward Hernandez, Director, Equipment Planning & Management (Centex Resource Group)

Photography: Wesley G. Garwood

Illustration: Thomas Chapman and Tim Crowther, SG Design, Inc.

Total building area (GSF): 105,000 (new); 45,000 (renovation)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $187

Total cost (excluding land): $28,000,000