The challenge presented in the design of the Yucalta Lodge was to de-institutionalize the traditional ‘hospital’ care home. This was achieved by emphasizing the residential scale, the character, and the non-threatening environment utilized in the design of this 125 bed facility. As important is the philosophy of care established by the administration and care givers that this facility must be the residents’ home and not a ‘hospital’.

The design concept commenced with the residents’ rooms which permit individual positioning of furniture and inclusion of personal belongings in a private space. The rooms are collected and grouped into cottages of approximately 36 residents; each cottage has two living, dining, and socializing areas for about 18 people. Exterior and interior landscaped areas provide a variety of secure, environments for residents, accommodating their needs and abilities. Common and accessible to each cottage is the ‘Yucalta’ or ‘meeting place’ with its central shops and support facilities.