Design Excellence Awards

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Best in City Center – Dallas Design Excellence Award
Presented to EYP Health
North Carolina Heart & Vascular Hospital
Raleigh, North Carolina

Project Description:

The eight-story North Carolina Heart & Vascular Hospital (H&V) project comprises five bed floors and a three story diagnostic and treatment building connected to an existing hospital. The H&V includes 114 licensed beds, including 72 step-down/telemetry beds, 20 cardiovascular intensive care unit (CVICU) beds, and 22 acuity-adaptable beds.

Diagnostic and treatment procedure spaces include six cath labs, two electrophysiology labs, two interventional radiology labs, one hybrid OR, one hybrid Cath, a 10-bed PACU, and a 40-bed prep recovery unit with 8 observation beds. Other services include Non-Invasive Cardiology Clinic, a Café, Conference and Education Center, Simulation Lab, In-patient and Out-patient Pharmacies, and In-patient Dialysis Care.

The project design challenges include:

Challenge 1: Efficiently combine multiple specialized heart services to promote teaching, wellness, and remote learning.

Challenge 2: Build a “Legacy Project” on an established hospital campus that reflects leadership’s high-tech vision for the future of heart care that both blends with the existing and establishes design precedents and a vocabulary for future branding and culture refreshes.

Challenge 3: Design to support wayfinding, both within building itself as well as relative to overall campus.

Challenge 4: Reinforce community outreach and environmental stewardship.

The Heart Hospital combines all UNC Rex specialized heart services into one building, creating a central location for world-class heart care. The facility provides a frame work to assist patients and their families through diagnosis, treatment and recovery. Features include:

  • A dedicated Resource Library allows for patient education and private consultation.
  • The Kardiac Café offers award winning chef-prepared healthy food options.
  • A 200 seat multi-function conference facility contains simulation labs for training, a highend Demonstration Kitchen for healthy cooking lessons and high-tech video remotelearning capabilities.
  • Enhanced ORs use component-driven planning for maximum flexibility and include seamless finishes, LED color-changing perimeter cove lighting and floor patterns that denote critical “zones of care” for team training, and a viewing theater for unobtrusive inperson observation/learning.
  • The light-filled cardiac rehab facility rounds out the program’s holistic partner-driven approach.

The project was informed by touchstone words selected by leadership that served as a metaphor for the four-chambers of the heart: Natural, Inviting, Clean and High-Tech. The building’s architecture creates a distinct visual brand while complementing the existing campus. A thoughtful blend of “Foundation Finishes” – stone, wood and glass – link exterior to interior, simplifying wayfinding and unifying the visual experience. The Interior Design and Finishes create a high-end, light-filled, welcoming and comfortable aesthetic but they are also strategic – the baseline neutral tones align with existing campus standards, easing finish transitions from building-to-building, and new finish introductions are carefully selected to maintain a refreshing yet enduring quality, satisfying strict durability and maintenance needs. The furnishings align with the hospital’s furniture standards program. Key “Foundation Finishes” will be applied to other campus buildings as a future branding refresh.

Intuitive design strategies are incorporated throughout: immediate and clear sight lines to main reception desk upon entry, as well as other information desks on other floors, using a “public path palette” of finishes to clearly highlight public routes and elevator banks, reducing decision points and thereby reducing opportunities for confusion, and distinct separation of on-stage and off-stage spaces. Interior signage and art landmarks provide reinforcement and support. Theme stories tied to regional animals are applied to patient floors for color zoning and for internal team building and motivation.

The building utilizes a high-performance envelope. Selection of glass and the location of shading devices were based on maximizing performance while minimizing glare on approach or around the site. This strategy was verified through computer modeling in collaboration with a reflectivity consultant. Materials were selected to promote sustainability and create an enduring environment that will last. Oak trees felled during construction were recycled into custom tables for both conference rooms and the café. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow in natural light and views of the existing tree-filled campus. Prominent artwork by North Carolina artists, and an interactive history wall create wayfinding landmarks and demonstrate strong ties to community.