Rock Creek Center
Type of facility: Private psychiatric and substance abuse facility
Client: Rock Creek Center
Project architect: Burnidge Cassell & Associates, Elgin, Ill.
Construction manager: Ragnar Benson, Park Ridge, Ill.
Size: 87,610 square feet
Total cost: $11 million
Cost per square foot: $125
The judges applauded an Illinois farm turned behavioral healthcare campus as well-conceived and utilizing the beauty of the existing structures.
Once known as Nathaniel Brown Farm, this site encompasses a limestone quarry and two historic buildings dating to the mid-1800s. The 42-acre campus includes four 15-bed residential lodges, two of which have attached therapy offices; an independent therapy building; an administration building; and a maintenance facility. The existing stone barn now serves as an art/therapy workshop and incorporates a two-story dining facility that overlooks a quarry pond.
The client sought a functional healthcare setting in a natural, peaceful environment suitable for a private psychiatric and substance abuse facility.
A special challenge was to build on a relatively rugged site without stripping its natural beauty. Natural wonders like creeks, bluffs and ponds dictated the number and location of structures and fulfilled the client's intentions to respect the nature-filled site.
Limestone, still quarried in the Lemont area, was incorporated in the new structures along with clapboard siding.
The design of the dining facility was inspired by the former farm buildings. The facility is accented by deep blue carpeting and furnished with country-style tables. A wall of windows and sliding doors to the terrace provides patients with fresh air and the serenity of nature. The art/therapy studio, also in the stone barn, is surrounded by stone walls, wooden beams and traditional multipaned windows.
The residential lodges feature large living rooms with stone fireplaces.
"The union of site with building is the true beauty of this project," said judge David Christy Thompson. "In addition, the integration of the existing stone barn into the complex establishes a range of architectural variety that keeps the composition fresh."