2014 Legacy Award Given to Two Healthcare Facilities

Lebanon, NH and Derby, CT – It was recently announced that Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and Griffin Hospital are both recipients of the 2014 Legacy Project Awards.These inaugural awards were presented at the International Summit & Exhibition on Health Facility Planning, Design & Construction (known as the PDC Summit) on March 18, 2014, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.

In an effort to expand the knowledge of great healthcare architecture and to honor those projects whose original innovation was sustained through time, the ACHA developed the Legacy Project Award program. This is the first award that celebrates ideas that continue to endure through a healthcare project’s life. While the healthcare design realm has many types and sponsors of healthcare design awards, none of these recognize the endurance of healthcare design innovation as demonstrated by the neutralizing passage of time. The Legacy Project Award honors a place of healing and was the result of the rich exchange of planning and design concepts by qualified master-builder architects engaged by enlightened clients who believed that innovation is first an attitude.

“A legacy is a gift that is passed down from one generation to another.  A healthcare building that exhibits high quality designs and encourages high performance functioning with minimal upkeep is a legacy to those who inherit the building,” commented Connie S. McFarland, FAIA, FACHA, President of the American College of Healthcare Architects.

A tour of the finalists revealed that Griffin Hospital, located in Derby, Conn., was ahead of its time and, as a result, there have been virtually no changes to the physical plant (North Wing).  However, the project submitted was not just about the North Wing, but also a holistic look at all renovations which maintains a consistency throughout the complex with materials and colors. There are no “haves” and “have nots.” The hospital pioneered many innovative concepts in design and operation that have become commonplace in today’s hospitals with emphasis on the family.

“Griffin represents an extraordinary translation of a culture and philosophy into design. Its legacy is that Griffin successfully demonstrates how a project can directly and positively influence human behavior,” commented juror Philip E. Tobey, FAIA, FACHA, Senior Vice President of SmithGroup, JJR.

Jurors concluded that Darthmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC), located in Lebanon, N.H., clearly influenced behaviors of the disparate parts of the enterprise and facilitated an integration of medical school, hospital, clinic and the co-located Veteran’s Administration.  In the first 10 years, the center experienced a 65 percent increase in surgical cases. Admissions also increased by 40 percent in response to the demographics and the building. During this same period, the national statistics had declined.  Its success may be attributed to the executive leadership’s philosophy that facilities support the culture of patient focus, not merely capture market share.  According to D. Kirk Hamilton, FAIA, FACHA, Professor at Texas A&M University and founding father of the American College of Healthcare Architects, “the legacy of this project is its ability to double the area of the original project (greater than one million square feet), while maintaining the integrity of the original facility principles.”

In its inaugural year, the Legacy Project Award was given to two projects.

“We felt that this sends a message that any project can be worthy of this award. We don’t want to make a habit of it, but did want to demonstrate that both large and small projects could merit consideration, as well as projects that aged differently could demonstrate lasting impact,” added David Allison, FAIA, FACHA, Director of Graduate Studies in Architecture + Health at Clemson University and ACHA j