Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital
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Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital

Elsa Baker
by elsabaker on 21 May 2021 for Rookie Awards 2021

Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital redefines the way healthcare views and treats mental illness. It is an environment designed to aid in empathetic medical attention and allow for remarkable journeys, ultimately serving as a step to end the stigma.

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Round of applause for our sponsors

Welcome to Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital.

Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital is an in-patient facility serving children and young adults with moderate to severe mental illness conditions located in Denver, Colorado. The hospital is located on the fourth, fifth, and rooftop levels of Platte Fifteen, a five story mixed-use building located in LoHi. This site has direct access to a river and park while also being in the heart of a young neighborhood, which allows the hospital to assimilate into a socially conscious community and lead the fight against stigma surrounding mental illness. Mental illness is often overlooked and under treated, so this project reimagines the mental healthcare sector with playfulness and empathy. This hospital is hinged on future reconciliations regarding behavioral health, and must work in congruence with the de-stigmatization of mental illness. 

No one will experience the space in the exact same way. So, it’s important to acknowledge the many emotions associated with the space while providing opportunities for those emotions to evolve. Doing so creates ‘moments' throughout the built environment that serve a variety of purposes to the users.

Rocky Mountain Behavioral Health Hospital redefines the way healthcare views and treats mental illness. It is an environment designed to aid in empathetic medical attention and allow for remarkable journeys, ultimately serving as a step to end the stigma. 

Main Entry and Nurse's Station

Residential Atrium and Patient Bedroom

Patient Bathroom and Glass Box Lounge

Breathing Nest and Central Atrium Slide

The majority of the central atrium is consumed by a green installation drenched in Colorado’s 300 days of sunlight from the skylight above. To reference the playfulness noted in the hospital’s philosophy, a slide connects the fourth and fifth floors. The yellow slide visually mimics the residential atrium stair, reiterating the connection between the split levels. This slide not only creates a dynamic center, but also allows for an immersive experience. This creates a fun, lively center for the hospital’s public space. The heart of the hospital beats here, encouraging patients to enter the slide, not knowing what might happen, only to wind through a non-linear path that ends amongst the living, growing, and thriving plants.


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