As the case for evidence-based design continues to mount, so does the number of projects that employ the most appropriate and effective design solutions based on available research and project evaluations. One such example is the new digital, PlanetreeSM concept Alegent Lakeside Hospital, designed by international architecture, planning, engineering and interior design firm LEO A DALY. Located in suburban Omaha, NE, Alegent Lakeside is Western Omaha's first full-service community hospital that combines the most advanced technology with a soothing, supportive atmosphere that is conducive to healing.
The 200,000-square-foot building was designed according to the PlanetreeSM philosophy, which recognizes that the patient's environment is important to the healing process. Patients and their visiting family members (who are also key in the healing process) were kept in mind during the design process to create a comfortable, nurturing space that helps promote life and energy.
Patient-centered care begins immediately upon entering Lakeside Hospital with a healing garden located off the entrance, below grade. Healing gardens have been shown to reduce the need for pain medications, and help shorten hospital stays. Lakeside's healing garden was created in a sunken area with a variety of flowers and plants, as well as a peaceful stream that flows through a natural stone bed—providing an area for respite and reflection.
The inspiration of the prairie-style design of the hospital was developed in collaboration with Alegent Health management and reflects the organization's long tradition of service to the community. The materials on the façade of the building include red brick, natural limestone, metal and tinted glass. The most prominent design feature is the entrance. Limestone buttresses support a spawning translucent canopy that highlights the entrance and provides cover for people exiting vehicles in times of bad weather.
Patient-centered care is prevalent in both the common areas and private rooms, which feature an abundance of natural lighting, stained glass, homelike décor and comfortable seating. The building is easy to navigate, and elevators and high-traffic departments are conveniently located near the main entrance.