Canadian Architect

Feature

Governor General’s Medal Winner: Bridgepoint Active Healthcare

WINNER OF A 2016 GOVERNOR GENERAL’S MEDAL IN ARCHITECTURE

May 19, 2016
by Canadian Architect

The hospital includes the renovated Don Jail and links to a series of surrounding park spaces. Photo by Geoff Grenville.

The hospital includes the renovated Don Jail and links to a series of surrounding park spaces. Photo by Geoff Grenville.

LOCATION Toronto, Ontario
ARCHITECTS Stantec Architecture / KPMB Architects—Planning, Design and Compliance Architects
HDR Architecture / Diamond Schmitt Architects—Design, Build, Finance and Maintain Architects

Bridgepoint Active Healthcare is as much about city building and engagement with the community as it is about creating an architecture of wellness for people with complex chronic diseases. It creates a positive destination for people seeking help and for those providing care. The design evolves from the patient experience and expands to engaging the community, city and natural world.

The hospital is the subject of North America’s largest post-occupancy study to assess the impact of design on health and wellbeing. This study has linked Bridgepoint’s design quality to patient and staff satisfaction as well as to inpatient healing: the average length of stay for stroke patients has been reduced by 12 days.

An upper-floor terrace provides generous outdoor space for patients to socialize and test their

An upper-floor terrace provides generous outdoor space for patients to socialize and test their
mobility. Photo by Tom Arban.

The project builds on a 2006 master plan to create a connected campus of new parks, plazas and pathways tied to the Riverdale residential community. The existing site is organized into a nine-square grid with the historic Don Jail occupying the central square. The hospital is located on the northwest edge. The entrances of the hospital and the Don Jail were planned to create a continuous interior public realm, connecting north-south and east-west to the landscape, the city and the community.

This connectivity is key. The building design optimizes the therapeutic benefits of nature for healing by emphasizing visual and physical access to the outdoors. Magnificent views of the lush Don River Valley and Riverdale Park, the changing downtown skyline, and the vibrant Riverdale neighbourhood are all highlighted to connect patients and staff to the community. The massing and organizational strategy breaks down the large building into neighbourhoods of care. The podium is conceived as a public building and draws on the idea of an “urban porch” inspired by the vernacular of domestic and resort architecture in Canada.

Each patient room includes horizontal windows to provide views from bed and from wheelchairs, while vertical windows act as a subtle nudge towards rehabilitation. Photo by Tom Arban.

Each patient room includes horizontal windows to provide views from bed and from wheelchairs, while vertical windows act as a subtle nudge towards rehabilitation. Photo by Tom Arban.

The hospital rooms were designed to give every patient—whether sitting or lying down—an unobstructed view, both horizontally and vertically. The vertical bay windows provide ground-to-sky views, visible from bed: a symbol of hope that expresses Bridgepoint’s goal of rehabilitation. The views encourage patients to get out of their rooms and reintegrate themselves into their community. The fenestration pattern of projecting pop-out vertical frames interspersed with horizontal windows communicates this strategy to the city. There are 464 vertical windows—one for each patient.

Bridgepoint Health is the first hospital in Toronto to be LEED Silver-certified. The building envelope incorporates durable and low-maintenance materials, including local stone, zinc metal panels and ipe wood. Low-iron glazing was used throughout to enhance the perception of the surrounding landscape. Interior materials were selected to support ongoing maintenance and infection control. Finally, a green roof with a dramatically positioned terrace is accessible to patients. Bridgepoint’s aspirations go beyond LEED to create an architecture of wellness that celebrates the sustainability of our healthcare system.

:: Jury :: This innovative healthcare project heals the city by revitalizing a historic jail site and linking patient spaces with nature and the city. The project is strong on connections: between present and past, hospital and city, patients and healthcare professionals. Unlike in most health care facilities, the interior and exterior spaces join to promote health, with areas for outdoor meeting, retreating and conversation. Windows, fixtures and spaces are scaled to the humans who occupy the facility. The former jail at the centre of the site opens onto public gathering space, connecting the grounds with the wider world. The jury applauds the many ways this project addresses the often dehumanizing aspects of the typical hospital experience.

CLIENT Bridgepoint Health | ARCHITECT TEAM Stantec Architecture—Michael Moxam, Stuart Elgie, Jane Wigle, Deanna Brown, Sylvia Kim, Norma Angel, Rich Hlava, Ko Van Klaveren, Tim Lee. KPMB Architects—Bruce Kuwabara, Mitchell Hall, Judy Taylor, Kevin Thomas, Glenn MacMullin, Paulo Rocha, Lilly Liaukus. HDR Architecture—Craig Ellis, Rodel Misa, Tod Trigg, Stewart Earle, Neil Sutton,  Hyounjung Ahn, Ellen Rogojine, Jesus Santos, Andy Wong. Diamond Schmitt Architects—A.J. Diamond, Greg Colucci, Antra Roze, Jeong Choe, Kirsten Douglas, Gilda Giovane, Chris Hoyt, Brian McClean, Giuseppe Mandarino. | STRUCTURAL/ELECTRICAL Stantec Consulting | MECHANICAL The Mitchell Partnership | LANDSCAPE Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg | SUSTAINABILITY/ENERGY Stantec Consulting | BUILDING CODE/FIRE AND LIFE SAFETY Randal Brown & Associates | ELEVATORS Soberman Engineering | VIBRATION/NOISE/ACOUSTICS Aercoustics Engineering Ltd. | COMMISSIONING CFMS Consulting | MUNICIPAL LEGAL ADVISOR McCarthy Tetrault | URBAN PLANNING Urban Strategies | HERITAGE E.R.A. Architects | SITE SERVICING RV Anderson Associates | TRAFFIC/TRANSPORTATION BA Consulting Group | FUNCTIONAL PROGRAMMING Agnew Peckham | ENVIRONMENTAL Golder Associates | ARCHEOLOGICAL Archeological Services | ARBORIST Bruce Tree Expert | FOOD SERVICES Kaizen Foodservice Planning & Design | STRUCTURAL Halsall and Associates | MECHANICAL/ELECTRICAL Smith & Anderson | LANDSCAPE The MBTW Group | CIVIL A.M. Candaras Associates | SUSTAINABILITY Halsall Associates | HERITAGE The Ventin Group | DESIGN BUILD FINANCE MAINTAIN CONSORTIUM Plenary Health Bridgepoint (Plenary Health, Innisfree Health) | CONSTRUCTOR PCL Constructors Canada | BUDGET $315 M | COMPLETION April 2013