Project category: New construction & Remodel/Renovation (completed December 2011)

Firms: Jensen and Halstead Ltd., (312) 664-7557

Design team: David Dastur, AIA, Architect, Principal; Gleen Seerup, AIA, Principal; Martha A. Strong, Director of Interior Design (Jensen and Halstead Ltd.); Dave Bodenschatz, Principal-in-Charge, MEP Engineer (KJWW Engineering Consultants); Brian P Hornickel, Structural Engineer (Abatangelo – Hason, Ltd.)

Photography: ©2011 Bruce Van Inwegen

Total building area (sq. ft.): 111,000 (new); 45,000 (renovation)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $378 (new); $178 (renovation)

Total construction cost (excluding land): $419,900,000 (new); $8,010,000 (renovation)

The primary objective of Riverside Medical Center’s new East Building is to offer exceptional patient care consisting of “our highest thinking, our kindest touch and strongest commitment to excellence”—three guiding principles of Riverside’s mission statement.

The architecture and interiors teams designed generative, healing environments themed around the seasonal beauty of Kankakee. Material palettes, created collaboratively with the medical center’s project team evoked the natural beauty of the area’s landmarks: the Kankakee River was referenced in the soft blues in the patterned glass of the LDR wing; limestone was studied to create the warm tones of the ICU and Neuro-Ortho wings; and the ever-changing hues of trees through the seasons were utilized to create a warm color scheme for the Operating Rooms and OR corridors.

The challenge we received from Riverside Medical Center was to lead the healthcare industry in creating an innovative, organized, and technologically advanced medical environment to provide efficient workflow and secure positive patient outcomes.  The priorities of this modernization project were to:

  • Move existing Operating Room facilities from a land-locked portion of the existing hospital into a spacious modern medical arena; Relocate the Labor and Delivery Unit to the southeast quadrant, complete with a dedicated C-Section OR and the most prominent views of the Kankakee River.
  • Provide enhanced patient care to the hospital’s thriving Neuro-Ortho specialties, as well as create a medically-advanced ICU unit.
  • Create spaces to foster long-lasting patient and visitor relationships.

Lean Design was employed in all aspects of the project, especially the following:

  • Operating Room Suites and Corridors:  Create organized, technologically-advanced OR’s that support efficient workflow. Care was given to create effective adjacencies to avoid creating “wasted steps” for staff.
  • Patient Units:  We evaluated our three patient unit designs (LDR, Neuro-Ortho, and ICU) and charted the anticipated staff movements required for each type of patient care. Modifications were made to the unit design to ensure that patients and support areas were within close proximity of nursing staff.
  • Support Areas:  The Central Core has dumbwaiter access to the Sterile Processing Department, located in the basement directly below the OR Suite, for both sterile and soiled supplies.

It was also a priority to utilize sustainable materials, utilize energy efficient lighting, heating, and cooling systems, capture views to the outside, and provide healthy working and healing environments to Riverside’s staff and patients. A beautiful Green Roof was constructed between the new building and the existing hospital.