Valley Health Center Morgan Hill

Revitalizing a Healthcare Facility in Silicon Valley

While Silicon Valley is famous for being a hub of tech innovation and one of the country’s wealthiest regions, there are low-income residents and a sizeable homeless population in Santa Clara County that also need access to healthcare services.

In 2020, Santa Clara County urgently needed a healthcare space for treating the growing population of homeless patients suffering from COVID-19. The County quickly turned its attention to a derelict vacant building in Morgan Hill that was a prime candidate for revitalization into a functional healthcare clinic.

Built in the 1980s by the Daughters of Charity, DePaul Medical Center operated as a hospital and later a training facility before shutting its doors completely in 2000, after which the building stayed unoccupied for nearly 20 years. In 2019, Santa Clara County purchased the property, which was in an advanced state of decay. The building had broken windows, beehives inhabited the air handlers on the roof, dead animals and graffiti littered the interior, and empty water pipes had crumbled into rusty shards. Rebuilding the facility would be a major undertaking.

Santa Clara County contracted GDG Architects to provide direction and guidance to the team of County managers, contractors, engineers and nursing staff, with the goal of transforming the space into a modern clinic. Since this project was kicking off during the early phases of a global pandemic, all efforts to restore the DePaul building were expedited – with the contractor building on GDG’s design plans even before the approval process was completed!

All interior walls and surfaces were removed, exposing vast open shell spaces to be rebuilt. The entire exterior thermal wall was replaced with new sheathing, stucco, windows and doors. Mechanical equipment was completely replaced with new piping and new electric lighting that comes on when entering each space. The once-dormant ventilation now flowed cool air conditioning, and the walls, floors and ceilings were all replaced throughout the entire building. By Spring 2021, the patient tower was rebuilt and functional, allowing the space to be used for patient treatment and quarantine.

Now renamed Valley Health Center Morgan Hill, the building officially opens in 2023 as a state-of-the-art healthcare facility with a large lobby and reception area, outpatient pharmacy, clinical specimen lab, urgent care, X-ray and multiple patient exam rooms.

“Redesigning a facility like Valley Health Center Morgan Hill is especially difficult during a pandemic. We needed to simultaneously get portions of the building operational to deliver on the immediate needs related to COVID-19, while fast-tracking the design, engineering, review, approval and contracting phases – often simultaneously! Supply chain issues made it difficult to obtain necessary materials, and our team of architects and engineers often had to work remotely and efficiently to meet an incredible timeline. The finished facility is truly the result of collaborative teamwork – we are pleased to revitalize this once-neglected building and turn it into a place that will benefit all local residents.”

– Jesse Given

By The Numbers

Location:   Morgan Hill, CA
Type of Project New Outpatient Urgent Care Clinic
Project duration 4 Years
Total Square Footage 22,450 Sq. Ft.
Contractor: SBAY Construction, Inc.
Additional Partners: Coffman Engineers (Engineering Services)
Project Cost $16,300,000

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