Public ideas sought for CPGH design

Posted: Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Central Peninsula General Hospital is seeking the public's opinions on interior and exterior design features for the hospital's upcoming $49.9-million expansion plan.

"We're looking for design features to make the hospital more patient friendly and family focused," said CPGH Chief Executive Officer David Gilbreath.

The planning committee would like ideas on design features ranging from the kind of artwork to hang on the walls to the type of accommodations to provide for visiting friends and family. Even the exterior look of the facility is open for comment.

"What does (the public) want it to look like when they drive up?" Gilbreath said he and the committee would like to know. "Do they want a brick hospital or a log cabin?"

Gilbreath conceded the log cabin look might be a bit much, but said he used the example to make the point that any and all ideas will be seriously considered.

"(The architects) have plenty of flexibility in some of the design features," he said.

Soderstrom Architects of Portland, Ore., will design the addition and renovations in partnership with ECI-Hyer to take advantage of the Anchorage-based architectural firm's arctic weather design experience.

Although the project's budget is fixed and the size of the two-story addition 74,000 square feet has been determined, little about the design has been set in cement, according to Soderstrom's president, Cameron Hyde.

"We're looking for inspiration, feedback, good ideas," Hyde said. "They can even tell us where they want to park."

Phase one site preparation is scheduled to break ground June 25. However, phase two construction of the two-story addition and phase three renovation of the existing facility aren't slated to begin construction until this December and December 2005, respectively.

"There's still time for the public to provide input," Gilbreath said.

The public will have an opportunity to provide its ideas and comments on the project from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday at a joint town hall meeting and required state Department of Health and Social Services public hearing at the Soldotna Senior Citizens Center, as well as at a town hall meeting from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 23 at the Sterling Senior Center.

CPGH also held town hall meetings last week at the Nikiski and Kenai senior centers, but no members of the public showed up.

Gilbreath is hoping for a better turnout in Soldotna and Sterling.

"This is an exciting time," he said. "I can't imagine why (the public) wouldn't want to show up and say they want this and this and this."

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