College of Agriculture & Natural Resources
Landscape Architecture

Green Hospitals: Sustainable Design and Its Impact

This semester, 4th year BLA student Hyung Seok Terry Choi has been working with Dr. Byoung-Suk Kweon on research titled: "Green Hospitals: Sustainable Designs and Its Impact."

The abstract for the poster is as follows:

"A hospital is an institution where treatment, care, and attention are provided to those in need. Despite all hospitals having the same mission, some hospitals have an advantage to achieving this goal by incorporating nature with the architectural space. Hospital patients with nature views had shorter postoperative hospital stays, took fewer strong pain medications and had fewer negative comments from nurses (Ulrich, 1984). While caring for patients should be top priority, a hospital should also help play a bigger role in society for the environment by considering more green and sustainable design. For instance at the Mercy Medical Center, a rooftop garden helps manage stormwater while creating a therapeutic landscape as well. Each of the rooftop garden’s features contributes in varying ways to help with the surrounding environment (Kimball, 2015). In this study, we will compare hospitals in Maryland with LEED certification and without LEED certification. The total numbers of hospitals in Maryland are 52 (Mattson, 2015). Out of 52, we chose 6 hospitals: 3 LEED certified and 3 non-LEED certified. We will compare environmental and economic outcomes of hospitals by measuring stormwater, and tree coverage through green intervention and site specific data. By analyzing the peak discharge and life cycle costs from stormwater measurements and the percentages of tree coverage, LEED certified Hospitals have increased more financial benefits and reduced peak discharge in the total of a 20-year life cycle. The average benefits of all 3 LEED certified Hospitals was $168,207 with a reduced peak discharge of 18%, while the average of all 3 non-LEED certified Hospitals was $93,942 with a reduced peak discharge of 16.3%. As for the average percentage of tree canopy, LEED hospitals had an average of 25%, while non-LEED certified hospitals had an average of 17%. These finding may provide critical evidence for healthcare facility design that impact on patients’ well-being and environmental sustainability."

Please explore the poster further and learn more about the findings regarding green hospitals!

Click image to enlarge!

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