A unique collaboration between Universal Health Services-Fairfax Behavioral Health and Providence Health Services, the new 100-bed Inland Northwest Behavioral Health Hospital is the first free-standing mental health hospital in the city of Spokane. The hospital is strategically located near the Sacred Heart Medical Campus, allowing for shared staffing and efficient patient flow from the emergency room to the new facility. However, the urban location presented some challenges, including a compact site, topography limitations, and an adjacent elevated freeway system.
In response to these constraints, UHS acknowledged the need to stray from their preferred standard planning template and reinvent their traditional model into a new typology to create a successful model of care. The three-story building nestles into the sloping site, consolidating the public areas and service spaces on the first floor. Patient bedrooms and support spaces occupy the two floors above, and the x-shaped plan separates different populations into four distinct wings and centralizes staff for security and operational efficiencies. Sleeping areas are consolidated on the south half of the building, the furthest away from interstate noise.
At the exterior, a masonry base offers protection against the urban environment. Metal ribbed panels at the second and third levels provide pattern and texture. The void space between the wings is utilized for two secure outdoor courtyards, featuring Swisspearl panels that create colorful and inviting spaces for patients to relax outdoors in a non-institutional environment.
The new Inland Northwest Behavioral Health Hospital represents a true community investment. By integrating architecture, artwork, and landscaping, the facility is unique to its place, overcomes the stigma associated with the care provided within, and provides a safe and encouraging place where people can heal.