University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital
Child/Adolescent Mental Health Program
To read a BWBR white paper written about this project, visit our Research page.
Moving beyond the institutional approach to mental health care design that put a premium on safety and durability, University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital (formerly Amplatz Children’s Hospital) opened its relocated, renovated behavioral health unit with an environment that soothes patients and families from the beginning. A bright and hopeful health care setting, with a lobby and family intake room that features soothing colors, wood tones, and flowing benches, greets patients and their families from the start, a strategy that immediately welcomes children into a healing journey by reducing the patients’ anxiety.
The whole unit is a presentation of transitions, from patient rooms to hallways, group areas to therapy rooms. Design elements – such as colored half circles at the threshold to patient rooms – allow children to enter spaces at their own pace, have some personal control, and remain engaged throughout their treatment journey. Moving from the counseling rooms designed to calm and comfort, patient and activity rooms arouse and energize with bold and cheerful colors. Textures are incorporated throughout the space to engage other senses and help patients find a sense of reference in a world that may have seemed out of proportion before treatment.
Size: 38,490 sq. ft.
Components: Eight private rooms, 12 semi-private beds, and 12 private intensive treatment rooms; adolescent chemical dependency unit; re-commissioned therapy pool; new secure outdoor play area
Completion: 2012 (seventh floor, pool, and play area); 2013 (sixth floor)
Rick Dahl (retired)
Don Thomas (retired)
Scott Holmes (retired)
Jeff Griesinger (retired)
Ron Laughlin (retired)