Whitin Giroux Works

Creativity. Innovation. Design Excellence.

formerly Whitin Design Works

Health Care

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Veterans Affairs Medical Center, San Diego Healthcare System
La Jolla, California

The “Landscape of Wellness” principle is the design basis for the outdoor spaces at the VA Spinal Cord Injury Building. The focus on patient needs and wellness means that landscape is visible from all new and existing patient rooms as a landscape view is now accepted as contributing to shortened hospital stays. Outdoor spaces are programmed for physical, horticultural and occupation therapy, family visits and meditation. PT/OT exercise and half-court basketball are integrated into the outdoor space adjacent to the indoor PT/OT center.

The SCI Terrace, a wood deck with palm trees evoking nearby Pacific Ocean beaches, is an outdoor space with barbeque and sitting areas for patients and families to relax. Four levels of building corridors and patient rooms overlook the Atrium Courtyard, a west facing space with vertical plantings and a linear fountain. The Remembrance Garden connects the existing VA hospital building with the new VA-SCI and significantly expands an existing memorial rose garden.

Special attention is given to optimizing green roof spaces for patient use, including a meditative view terrace, a group socializing space and horticultural therapy garden. This is a LEED Silver project.