Expanding Healthcare Access with Data-Driven Growth
For a growing healthcare nonprofit bringing specialized care to people across Mexico, space planning offers new directions
Salud Digna, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing affordable health services across Mexico, is growing exponentially. The plan serves as a 25-year development framework for the organization’s headquarters and related functions in a new emerging district at the city’s edge.
The proposed master plan identifies a new institutional campus for the expanding organization in the northwestern city of Culiacán. The new campus will enable Salud Digna to continue to grow, thrive, and elevate their role as one of the nation’s leading healthcare institutions while also serving as a model for innovative workplace design and collaboration.
Founded in 2003, Salud Digna’s rapid growth has been difficult to forecast. Sasaki worked closely with the ambitious organization to identify strategic initiatives and priorities that would influence future growth as well as their current space needs. After establishing a series of growth drivers and an understanding of the organization’s human-centered approach toward culture and operations, Sasaki developed a custom dashboard data visualization tool depicting how growth and new services could influence the physical development of the corporate campus. This custom dashboard tool dynamically adjusts based on user inputs and feeds into the campus space typologies, quantitatively visualizing the interrelationship between growth, workplace, and culture.
As assumptions change over the course of project implementation, the dashboard can be routinely applied to update space needs and make changes to the future build-out of the campus over time. In this way, Salud Digna can experiment with how different variables affect their larger vision for the organization’s future by linking strategic initiatives to space needs over time.
Over 25 years, the corporate campus will expand into a combination of office, lab, university, and community amenity spaces. The Corporativos will anchor the campus at the main intersection and include office, reception, meeting, and multifunctional spaces. The CNR (Centro Nacional de Referencia) will contain the company’s specialized lab program with a dedicated loading dock, general laboratories, optics lab, staff rooms, and lockers. Salud Digna University will initially serve as a hands-on training space co-located within the Corporativos and CNR program areas.
As the University evolves as a unit, it will include a dedicated entry, flexible learning environments, and recreation spaces while maintaining access to both Corporativos and CNR spaces for demonstration and training. Additionally, the new campus will offer communal amenities for staff, visitors, students, and community members, like dining options, event spaces, an auditorium, cafes, an indoor wellness space, and a family center. In the initial phases of development, these amenities will serve the Salud Digna community with the intention of evolving into district amenities for the surrounding neighborhood as the campus grows. The connections between each of these program elements and their relationship to communal amenities is critical in fostering the innovative mission of the new campus.
Given the climate of Mexico’s Sinaloa region, sustainability and resiliency were at the forefront of the planning and design process. The master plan closely considered a range of building and open space strategies, like optimal building orientation for wind movement and ventilation, solar energy, stormwater management, landscape and structured shading, and a diverse and sustainable planting strategy.
The new Salud Digna corporate campus will be a transformative project for both the company and the greater Culiacán community. In parallel with this master plan, Sasaki developed a plan for the larger area surrounding the campus known as Distrito Sur. This planning and visioning effort capitalizes on the potential of neighborhood anchors like Salud Digna and other nearby development to create a new mixed-use hub for the city. Unlike others in the metropolitan context, this mixed-use district can serve as a business center, a residential neighborhood, and a commercial destination. The development and implementation of Distrito Sur will provide Salud Digna with an ideal context and community setting for its future campus, where the institution and neighborhood can grow together.
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