Rogers Memorial Hospital Experiential Therapy Inpatient Treatment and Child & Adolescent Centers
On the western edge of Upper Nashotah Lake sits what looks like a stately English manor: a cluster of large, redbrick buildings stylized with white trim, ornate columns and multi-pane windows.
The property actually is the Oconomowoc campus of Rogers Memorial Hospital, which includes the hospital’s new child and adolescent centers.
The property’s builders and designers don’t mind the confusion.
“The goal was to make it as homey as possible as opposed to a hospital feel,” said Craig Jorgensen, president of Pewaukee-based VJS Construction Services Inc., which managed the project. “It was very much designed and built as a residential facility compared to a medical facility.”
That design is evident inside and out. Consider, for example, the building’s large windows. They overlook an English garden, as well as the surrounding woods and lake.
“As you look out these windows, you see trees and woods,” said Bill Pennoyer, a senior project manager also with VJS. “It makes you feel like you’re in a comfortable environment that allows the outside in.”
Which, of course, was precisely the point. The design purposely eschewed an institutional look to help patients heal, Pennoyer said.
“Being in a soothing, relaxing environment is going to be better for you than something that is chaotic or institutional,” Pennoyer said. “This is anything but.”
John Curran of Elm Grove-based TWP Architecture Ltd., one of the architectural firms that worked on the project, said the property is more like a large cottage compared to a typical hospital. For example, the roof is pitched instead of flat, Curran said, and the windows have a residential look.
Inside, rooms include private bathrooms, individual desks and armoires and comfortable seating. Gathering spaces have fireplaces and offer recreational activities. And there is a lot of natural light.
Most of the patients’ rooms are private, but some are shared.
“You have to take away the whole hospital aspect,” Curran said. “It’s like you’re building a big home.”
Patients of the hospital principally are minors in need of psychological and behavioral treatment. The hospital is the only treatment facility in the U.S. to provide cognitive behavioral therapy for children.
According to Pennoyer, the hospital’s child and adolescent centers make up the third building of a three-phase master plan project. The first phase started in 2010, and the final phase was completed in September 2012.
“The building that they are relocating from was almost a hundred years old,” said Jorgensen, of VJS. “It gave them a chance to move these kids to an up-to-date facility to help them heal faster than they would have in the old space.”