Fishermen’s Community Hospital, Marathon, Fla., suffered major damage in Sept 2017 when Category 5 Hurricane Irma swept through the Keys. Baptist Health South Florida closed the irreparably damaged facility, set up a temporary field hospital in its place, and enlisted NELSON, Miami, for the rebuild process.

Due to reopen in winter 2020, the full replacement hospital will provide emergency services, diagnostic and imaging, surgical, critical care, lab, pharmacy, and outpatient services in line with the local population’s needs. NELSON’s architectural team is implementing a design concept tailored to the hospital’s geographic risks, including:
• a building envelope and hospital infrastructure designed to withstand Category 5 hurricane wind events;
• flood resistance to three feet above the 100-year flood plain to be prepared for flooding conditions, exceeding FEMA criteria;
• reuse of the existing hospital’s demolition debris to support the foundation and divert additional waste from landfills; and
• a structure composed of concrete tilt-up panels for the building envelope and regional standard building components to minimize time and manpower on site, accommodating a reduced workforce that resulted from residents leaving post-Irma.