Page images

7. The great simplicity of structure of the pavilions, and their mode of grouping, reducing the cost of their construction to the minimum, and especially making extensions and additions to the capacity of the hospital easy and practicable, without marring the general plan or increasing the cost or size of the central building

8. The pleasant and harmonious appearance of the grounds and of the structures, upon completion, from all of the surrounding streets.

9. The great advantage derived by the city upon the exigency of an epidemic, or of any other occasion when it might be desirable suddenly to avail themselves of a hospital without the necessity of making any change of structure, or of endangering or alarming those already in the institution.

10. Its inexpensiveness, safety, and convenience, compared with any single structure, for the same number of patients. Each pavilion may be an independent hospital, and have all its cookery, washing, &c., done by itself, if necessary, in an emergency, or if contagion is feared, and without the slightest alteration in the plan presented.

11. Practical ventilation can be most effectually secured in a structure designed after the model proposed, without depending upon open windows and doors; and the same may be said of heating by flues and ducts in the floors, supplied with pure outside atmosphere carried into hollow chambers between floors and ceilings of each story.

The good and proper ventilation of buildings depend,

Upon their being placed in a salubrious and airy situation, that is, where there is a constant and unfailing supply of pure air.

Upon their free exposure to the morning and evening sunlight.

Upon a thorough separation of the wards from the central building, and from each other.

Upon the arrangement of channels for the admission of air, at a suitable temperature at all seasons.

Upon provision, by discharging ventiducts leading from every occupied room by enclosed pipes, to a central shaft or shafts, or chimneys, which shall be kept in constant and vigorous action by mechanical power, as a fan-wheel, or by heat or steam.

By such an arrangement of the windows that they also may be occasionally used for the great additional advantage of giving to the apartments a more direct, natural, and thorough airing than can be had by any artificial apparatus, however well contrived and however perfect, theoretically. The theory of using windows and spaces for light only is untenable, and therefore now very properly abandoned by the best experienced persons.

By avoiding always, as fatal to a perfect condition of the atmosphere of hospitals, all enclosed courts, whether three-sided or quadrangular, as a proper seclusion of the patients can be better had by other means, as by a little judiciously placed shrubbery or hedges upon the exposed sides.

12. Most effectual separation is secured by the distance of the pavilions from each other, and cannot be secured without, because it must be so great as to avoid the sounds, and the atmosphere, or emanations from one part being carried to another by a chance wind, or a change of its direction.

13. A thoroughly convenient connection of all parts with each other is obtained. This is as necessary as the preceding, and is conveniently and perfectly secured by this plan, as any patient or officer can pass from one part to another without the least trouble or exposure, or the intervention of stairs or dark passages.

14. The separate pavilions afford opportunities for all domestic duties to be performed in each building. It is believed, however, that the cooking, washing, ironing, &c., can all be performed in the basement story of the central building more economically and judiciously, excepting the preparation of teas, gruels, and other simples, which can be prepared much more readily and properly in the anterooms of the wards in each of the two stories of the pavilions. But, if it should be thought better, one of the buildings in the rear may be used for this purpose.

The design embraces six separate pavilions radiating from a


central structure, but entirely disconnected with said structure excepting by corridors or walks, each of the quadrant of a circle in form. The pavilions are intended to be so grouped with reference to the central building as to be located in parallel rows of two pavilions each, on three sides of the central building, at the distance of eighty feet therefrom. The ends of the pairs of pavilions face three of the four streets which surround the site, and are located one hundred feet back from the margin of the site or side of the street against which they face. The principal facade of the design which comprises two of the pavilions and the central building is designed to be located one hundred feet back of the margin of the site, on the Springfield side thereof, the centre building being however located one hundred and forty feet back from the said street.

Four of the six pavilions will accommodate from forty to fifty patients each, and are to measure one hundred and seventeen feet in length and twenty-eight in width. The remaining two pavilions are intended for twenty beds cach, and are to measure eighty-nine feet in length and twenty-eight feet in width. All six of the pavilions are of three finished stories in height, to wit: basement and two dormitory stories. The central building is proposed to be sixty feet square, and is also three stories in height, arranged exclusively for the officers' apartments and other conveniences requisite for the care-taking and the supervision of the proposed institution.

The pavilions are to be so located as to be one hundred feet apart in the clear, and at an average distance of one hundred feet from the central building, thus securing the most ample space for light and ventilation to and between the several buildings composing the complete design. The arrangement and position of the buildings, in reference to each other, renders the erection of any two of the pavilions and the centre building, or even two of the pavilions without the centre building, a complete hospital inside, avoiding the necessity of erecting a building of more than the requisite capacity at the present time.

But while the sanitary arrangements of the proposed structure have thus engaged, as is most fit, the most careful thought and attention which it has been in my power to bestow, I have not allowed myself to be insensible to the rare opportunity presented in this building for external architectural effect. The very necessities of the plan, as described above, are of themselves the sources of some of the highest architectural beauties. A central building with a portico surmounted by a bold and picturesque dome, and connected laterally by means of open colonnades, with advanced pavilions of a corresponding style of architecture, presents in its own absolute requisitions the groundwork for artistic effect of the highest order, and such as in buildings intended for other and different purposes, great additional outlay and serious inconveniences of arrangement have sometimes been submitted to in order to attain. The primary and secondary masses of light and shade in the composition are, by this arrangement, made to glide into each other by the most gradual transitions of effect, while the open screens of double columns in the corridors curve round into different relations of position and shadow with each footstep of the advancing spectator.

The architect in laying out the central building has, in conformity with the opinion of experienced persons, intentionally confined it to its present dimensions.

1. Because it is only a part of, and but one of the features of a plan, which unites and combines the group of buildings into a harmonious and beautiful architectural whole.

2. Because it contains ample accommodations for all the neces

sary officers.

3. Because a hospital being intended for the accommodation of patients and not for the attendants ; and because, indeed, it is a hospital and not a hotel, he has not thought it advisable so to plan and lay out the buildings as to make an unduly large proportion of the cost fall upon the main or central building.

4. Because by too much extension of the central building, and by attempting to retain within it too close a connection with the pavilions, and too much of the administrative part of the hospital service, the great advantages of the pavilion system are imper

[ocr errors]

illed, and the advantages sought and expected to be gained by it would be almost as effectually lost by too “ huddled” a grouping of the pavilions as by their omission altogether.

The particular style chosen is the modern style of Rennaissance architecture, a style which, from its own inherent beauties, not less than from its almost universal susceptibility of adaptation to structures of a dignified and monumental character, stands confessedly at the head of all the forms of modern secular architecture in the chief capitals of the world.

Respectfully submitted,


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »