Building Description Highland Park General Hospital, Highland Park Michigan
The Highland Park General Hospital Complex consists of three separate building units situated on a six-acre site at the western edge of Highland Park, Michigan. The primary building unit of the complex faces northwest on Glendale Avenue, and consists of the original hospital building (1918) and the nurses' residence (1925). Two smaller building units are located to the rear of the complex site, consisting of the power plant and laundry buildings (1921 and 1940) and the Contagious and Psychopathic Units (1926). The complex was developed to be a coherent, monumental assemblage of buildings and wings, being united by a clear sense of hierarchical relationships, common materials and a fundamentally simple and utilitarian. approach to design, regardless of period of construction. The building elements erected during the 1920s-1940s are detailed in a neo-Georgian manner characteristic of "period" design of this period, while the elements erected during the post-World War II years have no historical or ornamental detailing. The complex is located in a residential district which is comprised of both apartment Structures and single-family dwellings. A parking lot is located across the street to the northwest and there has been some clearance of lots in the vicinity. The John C. Lodge Expressway borders the property on the west.
The individual elements of the Highland Park General Hospital Complex, may be described as follows:
1. The main building of the hospital: originally, the main building consisted of a four-story, flat-roofed, T-shaped block of concrete-frame construction, faced with reddish-brown brick and detailed with light tan-colored terracotta elements in a neo-Georgian manner. The six bays of the central entrance block. were flanked by slightly projecting end pavilions consisting of three bays each, and there was a central one-story porticoed entrance detailed with classical columns and surmounting balustrade. In 1944 a two story west wing was added, and in 1954 an additional two stories were added, making the addition four stories high. In order to make the facade symmetrical following the addition of the west wing, the main entrance of the original building was removed and a new central entrance was established in the western projecting pavilion of the original block. The main building, with its wing, is articulated with a regular arrangement of multi-paned windows capped with Keystone lintels, a surmounting cornice and belt courses, and other elements derived from the classical style system employed in neo-Georgian designs. The detailing is considerably Simplified on the subsidiary faces of the building. The interiors have been considerably modified and vandalized over the years, leaving them devoid of significant architectural features or detailing.
2. The Nurses' Home and its east addition: The Nurses' Home is also a four-story, concrete-frame building with brick facing and terracotta detailing of neo-Georgian character. This building maintains the same setback as the main hospital building, and is similarly symmetrical in composition. The facade is divided into three parts, with a central entrance made monumental by its framework of tonic pilasters and entablature, and with end pavilions defined by a quoining treatment detailed with terracotta blocks. The fenestration is regular, but lacks the keystone-lintel treatment of the main hospital. The building is U-shaped in plan. The one-story addition to the east links the Nurses' Home to the main hospital building. The interiors are similarly devoid of significant architectural features or detailing.
3. The outpatient wing and health building: The two-story outpatient wing and health building is of masonry construction utilizing reddish-brown brick facings, generous horizontal fenestration, and reinforced concrete framing. This building is located to the east of the main hospital building, and connected to it by a one-story breezeway; it maintains the same setback as the main hospital building. The interior has been considerably vandalized.
4. The general services additions: a series of additions were made to the rear of the main hospital building in the early 1960s. These masonry elements are faced with brick of similar character and color to that of the earlier buildings and are detailed in a strictly plain and utilitarian manner. They house various facilities, including kitchens, emergency rooms, and loading dock.
5. The power plant and laundry: these two structures, located at the rear of the hospital site, date from the 1920s and 1940s, respectively. They are faced with red brick and detailed with light-colored concrete copings, sills, and string courses compatible in character with the design elements of the main buildings. The windows are multi-paned. To the west of the power plant is a brick-faced concrete chimney.
6. The Psychopathic and Contagious Units: These two two-story masonry structures function as a single building unit which is U-shaped in plan. They are situated at the east corner of the hospital site, behind the main hospital buildings and to the east of the power plant and laundry. Both are detailed in a neo-Georgian manner and are of reinforced concrete construction. Both buildings have impressive pedimented facades. The Contagious Unit, to the east, is distinguished by a projecting one-story doric porch, while the entrance to the Psychopathic Unit is framed by doric columns which support an entablature. The quoining, belt courses, copings and sills are all detailed in limestone. The interiors have been considerably altered and vandalized.