By Eric Althoff
CORPUS CHRISTI, Tex.—The Kansas City-based architecture and design firm Hoefer Wysocki has been commissioned to work in conjunction with developer US Federal Properties (USFP), also of Kansas City, to build a Veterans care facility in South Texas. The Community-Based Outpatient Clinic will be built for client U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs Texas Valley Coastal Bend Health Care System and will be leased to the VA. The new facility will be conveniently located near the VA Specialty Care Clinic as well as public transit and major freeways for maximum accessibility.
The two-story, 75,000-square-foot clinic will apply the VA’s Patient Aligned Pact Care Team (PACT) model of care, which focuses on a treatment plan tailored to each individual veteran’s needs. The Community-Based Outpatient Clinic will offer both primary care and mental health services for the estimated 25,000 veterans who reside in the greater Corpus Christi area.
Additionally, the leased-facility model allows the VA department to eventually realign its care options for the future as the needs of the local Veterans community potentially shift with changing care needs as well as fluctuating demographics.
Hoefer Wysocki’s design motif takes into account efficiency and sustainability. And as Corpus Christi is located on the Gulf of Mexico, the architecture firm’s design incorporates nautical motifs, such as a calming covered entryway that is meant to be reminiscent of water. Furthermore, the clinic’s design is meant to marry interior and exterior spaces such that they appear to patients and visitors to be simultaneously indoors and outdoors. To accomplish this melding, Hoefer Wysocki will be installing large windows as well as landscaping along the exterior to promote a bigger healing environment.
The architects have laid out the interior to be as intuitive as feasible, but if help in getting around is still needed, information kiosks will be provided. Furthermore, waiting areas are meant to be relaxing, and the overall layout is meant to allow for easier interactions between patients, staff and family and friends. Each care area is dedicated to privacy, and the spaces between care areas are meant to minimize the amount of time patients and their families must travel in between them.
USFP has worked for decades with the federal government to develop and operate properties. The Community-Based Outpatient Clinic will be the 16th project that USFP has worked on with Hoefer Wysocki. Dan Carr, a principal with USFP, said this latest Veterans clinic showcases how the two entities have collaborated for over two decades.
“Together we’ve successfully delivered 1.6 million square feet of VA clinics and GSA facilities,” Carr said in a recent statement. “The community impact is virtually immeasurable. But knowing that we’re able to continue the mission of helping bring care to those who served in the Armed Forces is an incredible honor.”
The new facility will also place special emphasis on mental health. According to various surveys, homelessness continues to be a problem for veterans suffering from mental illness. Thus, an aspect of the new facility’s care will be integrating mental care as well as community outreach efforts to those living on the streets. Furthermore, as patient and caretaker safety remain of utmost concern in the time of coronavirus, telehealth and virtual care will be part of the new care paradigm. Specialty care will also include a women’s health clinic as well as a suite for CT and MRI scans.
In a recent statement, Hosam Habib, director of design at Hoefer Wysocki, emphasized the need for increased veterans’ care.
“This clinic will consolidate multiple primary and specialty services under one roof to better serve and empower the veteran community in and around Corpus Christi,” Habib said.
The Community-Based Outpatient Clinic will be the fourth design-built veterans care clinic that Hoefer Wysocki has built in the Lone Star State. Hoefer Wysocki is working with developer USFP, general contractor Jacobsen Construction as well as several engineering consulting firms, including Pape Dawson Engineers, Inc. and Bob D. Campbell & Co.