From the AIA:
“Elegant, nimble and always a connection to outside views” captures the jury’s reaction to this large new replacement hospital located in between wetland preserves and the Atlantic City Expressway in New Jersey. Situated on 125 acres, Virtua Voorhees is a state-of-the-art hospital defined by three areas of care, including women and children, obstetrics and adult medical, and surgical with supporting adult and pediatric emergency departments. The building design features two primary masses: a sensuously curved patient bed tower and a testing, surgical and support services block. Both forms are pinned together by a central spine that distributes people, materials and mechanical systems throughout the building. This feature also will enable the hospital to grow over time. Energy efficient glass and natural materials of stone and wood are prominent to create texture, warmth and a healing environment. The patient tower offers lush views of the preserve, fostering a connection with nature and daylight. Site planning and building massing reflect a sensitive sustainable footprint that draws daylight deep into the facility. Green roofs absorb rainwater, with excess used to recharge the constructed wetlands.
Jury Comment: “This is an elegant and clearly nimble solution. The power of this scheme is the access to light. It keeps the relationship to the outside always very close and maintains a connection for the patients and visitors between the inside and the views of the outside. In a time and a world where medical design is becoming more convoluted and fragmented, it’s refreshing to see the power of a simple plan organization and palette of materials that create a special set of experiences and a very supportive healing environment. We applaud the hospital for trusting the architect in the use of durable elegant materials and the contractor’s care in crafting these materials on a large hospital.”
For more information, please visit: http://aiaw.org/media/DA2012pr.shtml