Oklahoma Breaks Ground on Mental Health Services Hospital

By Eric Althoff

BROKEN ARROW, Okla.—Healthcare provider SoundMind Behavioral Health Hospital LLC of Tulsa, Oklahoma, has broken ground on a 55,000-square-foot facility to be located in the nearby city of Broken Arrow.

The hospital has been designed to deliver high-quality care for mental and behavioral episodes of both chronic and acute variety.  Psychiatric services will be available both in a general practice as well as another focused care for geriatric inpatient and outpatient assistance.  A special emphasis will be on dementia care; approximately 6 million people in the United States suffer from some kind of dementia, according to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Architectural firm Dewberry of Fairfax, Va., designed the 14-acre healthcare environment to entail three separate nursing units, each with 24 beds.  The facilities will also feature an ECT procedure room, spaces for assessing and admitting patients, dining space, offices and administration areas, and an area specifically for outpatient group therapy.  Additionally, the design takes care to avoid sharp metallic edges and other elements that could potentially be used to self-harm.

Each one of the units will entail a nurses’ station, quiet room and a seclusion room as well.

Dewberry’s designers collaborated with SoundMind’s staff to design a healthcare space that emphasizes comfort and safety in calming environments.  In this vein, Dewberry’s motif entails extensive windows allowing daylight into the interior spaces.  Furthermore, there is an emphasis on the marriage of indoor and outdoor spaces, with natural elements not necessarily ending at the door.  Accordingly, various courtyards allow both physical and visual incorporating of the outdoors into the interior.  And in private medical areas, where windows are not desirable, the designers are incorporating artwork specifically meant to be therapeutic and calming.

Dewberry is serving not only as the healthcare project’s prime architect but also as interior design consultant.  The project team also includes mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineer EDA+FKI Engineers and Wallace Engineering, which is providing site, civil and structural engineering consulting work.

Cowen Construction, which is also based in Tulsa, will be working on the healthcare facility as the general contractor.

“In light of the pandemic, mental health issues are escalating and highlight the critical need for facilities designed to address these needs,” Dewberry Senior Project Manager Cassey Franco said in a statement emailed to HCO News regarding the type of care that will be provided in the new facility in Broken Arrow.  “It is always exciting to work on projects that address great needs and impact people’s lives in the community.”

Dewberry, which was founded in 1956 in Virginia, has over 50 locations around the country employing some 2,000 people.  In addition to the Oklahoma facility, the firm has also worked on other healthcare projects that include renovating the Ronald McDonald House Houston’s Holcombe House, located on 2.5 acres at the Texas Medical Center.

The project in Broken Arrow is expected to be completed and open in 2021.