HDR Design Three Paradigm-Shifting Hospital Projects

29 November 2022

HDR has been appointed as the lead design firm on three healthcare projects across the public and private sectors in a series of significant appointments for the practice.

HDR will work with the Victorian Health Building Authority to design 10 new community hospitals in Victoria, design Health Infrastructure’s Rouse Hill Hospital investment in NSW, and deliver Minchinbury Community Hospital Redevelopment for Macquarie Health Corporation as part of its commitment to transforming the patient and provider experience across Australia’s east coast.

Recently announced by the Victorian Health Building Authority, HDR, in collaboration with DesignInc, will deliver a $675 million Community Hospitals Program that will provide Victorians who are not critically unwell with improved access to a broad range of walk-in hospital, community health and social care services closer to home, as well as relieve pressure on major hospitals. Located near major population growth areas, the program is being delivered through a combination of new developments, upgrades and expansions to existing sites across Eltham Area, Emerald Hill, Point Cook, City of Whittlesea, Craigieburn, Phillip Island, Sunbury, Cranbourne, Pakenham and Torquay.

HDR Director of Health Bruce Crook said that the Community Hospitals Program will improve healthcare accessibility, both in-person and via telehealth services, across burgeoning regions. “This new approach to healthcare is transforming hospitals from conventionally monolithic closed systems to community- driven infrastructure that transcend the walls of the hospital,” he said. “We are working in consultation with our 10 communities, and each hospital will be underpinned by healing, inclusion and flexibility.”

In another major growth area, HDR has also been appointed to design the new $300 million Rouse Hill Hospital. With a focus on innovation and technology, the new hospital will meet the needs of the northwestern Sydney community and connect back into the existing HDR-designed town centre, public transport and pedestrian networks.

The masterplan phase, unveiled by Health Infrastructure this month, has been informed by an evidence- based research study conducted by the Australian Institute of Health Innovation and Macquarie University. They concluded that alternative, patient-focused care pathways predicated on choice, individualisation and flexibility are required. The masterplan has also been guided by Connecting with Country experts Bangawarra, in consultation with Knowledge Keepers and Traditional Custodians, to embed the facility within its ecological, geological and knowledge systems and inform the siting of the buildings, open spaces, site access points and circulation.

“Across the planning, design and delivery process, we will place the patient, community and staff experience at the centre, all while considering how the environment will interact with the end user,” said Joe Mihaljević, HDR director of health in NSW. “For example, the permeability of the ground floor plane will connect the activity of the new Rouse Hill Hospital with the landscape provided by the site and imbue a sense of openness, healing, and connection to Country and community.”

To complete the trifecta, HDR has been appointed to design Macquarie Health Corporations’ Minchinbury Community Hospital Redevelopment in western Sydney; a privately owned, multifunctional health and wellness facility that will provide specialist clinical and diagnostic services in a community setting.

Focusing on mental health, wellness, rehabilitation, surgical and urgent care, it will act as a node for the local Minchinbury community and surrounding area – and meet the demand for hospitals of tomorrow.

“The pandemic has expedited innovations in healthcare across the globe,” said Cate Cowlishaw, HDR managing principal. “We are proud to be leveraging our global knowledge base and channeling our local expertise into innovative design solutions that deliver new models of care across our eastern seaboard.”

Ranked No. 1 in healthcare design in the U.S., HDR has been delivering healthcare projects in Australia for over 20 years. Key projects include Westmead Health Precinct Redevelopment, Dubbo Base Hospital Redevelopment, Western Cancer Centre Dubbo, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and the Sunshine Coast University Hospital. The team has also been recently appointed as health planners on the Grafton Hospital Redevelopment project with Woods Bagot and as principal architect on the Temora and Finley hospital expansions in rural NSW.