November 16, 2010
Contact: Christine Martinez, Sharp Memorial Hospital
858-939-6814 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Delle Willett, Schmidt Design Group, Inc.
619-665-5981 or email@example.com
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR. Falcon Valley Group
619-997-2495 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Uplifting Design Takes Sharp Memorial Hospital Project to New Heights
Roof top garden outside patient recovery rooms intended to relieve stress and aid healing
(San Diego) – Patients at Sharp Memorial Hospital can now enjoy a natural healing boost during recovery, thanks to the addition of a green roof visible from the hospital’s patient rooms.
The project, which is located atop the emergency department entrance, was completed in November. The Sharp Memorial green roof was designed by award-winning landscape architect Glen Schmidt of Schmidt Design Group, Inc., San Diego. Schmidt has experience designing healing and health-oriented landscape projects including several therapeutic gardens at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital. The roof was constructed by GreenScaped Buildings of San Diego, under the direction of San Diego’s foremost expert on green roofs and living walls, Jim Mumford. The Sharp project is the first completed green roof on a hospital in San Diego County.
Schmidt Design Group’s design features linear rows of plants in a framework that depicts a music staff. Large potted plants are strategically placed to represent musical notes. The pattern represents the opening notes to the familiar melody of “Ode to Joy” from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. As viewed by patients on floors above the roof, the green roof’s design is easily discernable when patients look down on the roof. According to Schmidt, “We wanted the patients to see more than greenery when they looked out their window; our design provides a sense of discovery.”
The rooftop garden is approximately 180 long and 40’wide. A 70-ton crane transported 15 dump trucks (or 650 wheelbarrow loads) full of soil onto the roof, and lifted plants into position over the course of eight weeks. The majority of the 20,000 plants in the roof are pre-grown sedum varieties grown in “tiles.” These drought- tolerant groundcovers are irrigated with drip irrigation.
The environmental benefits of green roofs are well known. Green roofs can prevent water pollution by reducing the amount of stormwater entering sewer systems, slowing it down and filtering it; lower energy use and energy costs; lowering air temperatures to combat the urban heat island effect; clean and oxygenate the air; add biodiversity, mitigate noise; suppress fire, and extend the lifespan of the roof.
In a health care setting, green roofs provide even more benefits. According to the American Horticultural Therapy Association, the benefits of therapeutic garden environments have been known since ancient times. In the 19th century, Dr. Benjamin Rush, the “Father of American Psychiatry,” asserted that garden settings hold curative effects for people with mental illness.
Multiple studies show viewing plants and nature significantly reduces stress, aids in faster recovery, reduces the use of pain medication and even shortens hospital stays.
Sharp Memorial was recently named “America’s Most Beautiful Hospital” by Soliant Health, one of the largest medical staffing companies in the country. "When designing the new Sharp Memorial, creating an environment that enhances the healing process for patients and reduces stress for loved ones was at the heart of the design strategy," said Tim Smith, chief executive officer of Sharp Memorial Hospital. “Our green roof project represents Sharp HealthCare's continued commitment to provide our patients and families with not just what they need and expect, but what they really want and deserve.”
“The Sharp project just happens to be my lucky 13th green roof project,” said Mumford. “It’s the most exciting project I’ve worked on and by far the most meaningful. It’s amazing to stop and think that our roof project may offer patients at Sharp Memorial Hospital a sense of peace and tranquility. I’m proud to be a part of the team bringing Schmidt Design Group’s design alive and making this project a reality.”
“We were very excited to work with such an enlightened client as Sharp who understands the health and well-being benefits of green environments. We are very grateful to have the opportunity to work on projects with Sharp that bring joy and comfort to patients recovering from their illnesses,” said Schmidt.
The Schmidt Design Group, Inc., design team for the Sharp green roof included Glen Schmidt, FASLA principal-in-charge; Karen Costante, project manager; Aark Engineering Structural Engineers; and Tanner Engineering Electrical Engineers. The GreenScaped Buildings construction team for the Sharp green roof included Greg Raymond, GRP, a green-roof professional from Chicago who has experience constructing 500,000 square feet of green roof space; Todd Nelson, Certified Green Roof Professional (GRP), site supervisor; and Pari Ryan,project manager. The roofing contractor was Ulf Waldmann, Mission Valley Roofing, Inc. The electrical contractor was Gary Rehkopf of Standard Electric and the plumbing contractor was Don Schoenberger, Core Plumbing.
For additional information, visit www.greenscapedbuildings.com and http://www.schmidtdesign.com/
About the Schmidt Design Group, Inc.
Founded in 1983, the Schmidt Design Group, Inc., has pursued a philosophy of balancing artistic expression in design with environmental sensitivity. Headquartered in San Diego, its work spans many scales of private as well as public landscape architectural design. It has won more than 75 local, state, national and international design awards for its work including a national honor award from the American Society of Landscape Architects this year.
About GreenScaped Buildings
After more than 30 years of providing award-winning plantscaping service and design to the region as the owner of Good Earth Plant Company, Jim Mumford and GreenScaped Buildings has expanded the focus to include green roofs, living walls, and rainwater harvesting systems. Mumford’s passion for low-impact development, sustainability and restorative buildings will cultivate a legacy through GreenScaped Buildings for which future generations can be proud.
About Sharp Memorial Hospital
With a tradition of excellence since 1955, Sharp Memorial Hospital is recognized internationally for outstanding programs in emergency and trauma services, surgery, cardiac and vascular care, cancer treatment, rehabilitation, orthopedic and neurological services, women’s health, weight- loss surgery, multi-organ transplantation and home care.
A Magnet-designated facility for nursing excellence, Sharp Memorial recently completed an expansion to become San Diego’s first hospital with all private patient rooms. The new 315,000-square-foot, 334-bed structure, named the Stephen Birch Healthcare Center, is also the first hospital in San Diego to open since 1993.
Sharp Memorial is part of Sharp HealthCare, the region’s largest health care provider and a 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient. To learn more about Sharp Memorial, visit www.sharp.com/memorial or call 1-800-82-SHARP (1-800-827-4277).