New Stanford Hospital

Stanford Hospital

Palo Alto, CA, USA

A cutting-edge healthcare facility and bold vision for the future of medicine promotes patient and staff wellness and signals what’s to come in resilient architecture.

Bridging human-centered design and technological innovation, the Stanford Hospital sets a new standard for patient care. Along with executive architect Rafael Viñoly Architects, healthcare architect Perkins Eastman envisioned a biophilic and hospitality-infused building that facilitates connection, effective treatment, and healing. With a modular, resilient design that allows for flexibility and future expansion, the building can be adapted to accommodate the evolving needs of the Stanford community and is capable of withstanding a 500-year seismic event.

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“This building represents a whole new approach to health care, not just in design but in the patient experience.” – Amir Dan Rubin, President and CEO of Stanford Health Care

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Conceived of through a collaborative process with Stanford Health Care and the design team, the hospital’s inventive plan mimics a patient’s journey. Four levels, centered on the themes of connect, treat, heal, and care stack vertically and emphasizes overall wellness. An inviting sunlit atrium welcomes patients and caregivers, seamlessly connecting them to advanced treatment areas on the second floor. The third floor’s 40,000 square foot garden, designed with drought-resistant plants and sustainable systems, is the beating heart of the hospital. Integrating nature with nurture, its landscaped terraces are a lush regenerative oasis that promote rest and recovery. Upper level care pavilions comprised of 368 private rooms and ICUs, as well as staff and communal spaces, offer state-of-the-art accommodations for healing and visitation. Stimulating emotional well-being, more than 400 works of art grace the public areas throughout the hospital.

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The team set out to reimagine what a hospital room could be with an understanding of how design can directly impact the healing process. In stark contrast to traditional hospitals, each private room features a 14-foot-wide window where patients can gaze out on tranquil views of the Stanford campus and foothills of the Santa Cruz mountains from the comfort of a bed that is set away from the bustling hallways. Large television screens connect patients and family members with health records, service requests, and entertainment options. Loved ones are also encouraged to spend time with patients in recovery, enjoying the privacy and comfort of flexible sleeper sofas and storage space for their belongings. Nurses and doctors have access to a vestibule with a sink, counter, and curtain where they can perform their duties effectively while minimizing disruptions.

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Designed to accommodate future interdisciplinary innovations through complex health care technology, Stanford Hospital fosters advancements in medical science at the nexus of Silicon Valley and Stanford University academics. It also embodies advancements in building science and resilience, featuring a highly specialized seismic base isolation system. Built to survive an 8.0 earthquake, the facility can function for the first 96 hours after a significant seismic event, going above and beyond California code requirements. A community-centered institution, Stanford Hospital also has a 900-vehicle garage designed to transform into a triage center during a natural disaster or contagious disease outbreak.

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“We used to design for the convenience of physicians and nurses. Today, with the industry’s awareness of the critical link between a patient’s well-being and medical results, Stanford wanted to prioritize the patient-centric experience.” – Erich Burkhart, FAIA, Principal-in-Charge