Evanston Hospital

Evanston, Illinois

Brick in Architecture Silver Award (Healthcare Facilities)
Healthcare Design Magazine Architectural Design Showcase

Evanston Hospital is the flagship hospital for NorthShore University HealthSystem and has served Chicago’s North Shore for more than 100 years. ESA was retained to masterplan and provide architectural services for the primary components of the campus’s redevelopment, including a new three-level atrium lobby; a main hospital entry; 1,650-car parking structure; all public and auxiliary spaces; the new Walgreen Research Building; and the new LEED certified Kellogg Cancer Care Center.

Hospital circulation paths and multiple entrances now converge in the dramatic multi-level atrium lobby that serves as the hospital’s main conduit for traffic flow. Staff and visitors enter the hospital from the garage on different levels designated for outpatient, inpatient, visitor, staff, or physician use. Relocating all public amenities and waiting areas to the atrium allowed the hospital to reclaim valuable space for clinical use.

The extensive use of skylights in the entry canopy and lobby, along with interior landscaping and water features, creates a lively space for rejuvenation and growth. The atrium’s strong visual focus helps visitors easily orient themselves from all levels, and its palette of limestone, slate, and brick diffuses the impression of a clinical environment. A key feature is a naturally lit three-story slate water wall that references the shoreline of Lake Michigan less than half a mile away. This and an adjacent grove of bamboo trees add an element of nature and form a comforting setting for hope and healing.

A major challenge in the redevelopment was to avoid overwhelming the surrounding neighborhood’s residential scale. To achieve this, ESA maximized setback distances for the parking structure and positioned one-half of the garage’s seven levels below grade.

Brick, copper, and cast stone were selected as the materials that would best reflect the traditions and ambiance of the neighborhood while having the added benefit of seamlessly unifying the existing hospital structures.