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Arizona State Hospital

About ASH

Learn more about the Arizona State Hospital and its history:

Construction of a New Arizona State Hospital

Not since Arizona was a territory has there been such a transformation in the state's only publicly owned and operated hospital, as seen during the past few years. The Arizona State Hospital (originally deeded as the Insane Asylum of Arizona in 1885 by the 13th Territorial Legislature) opened for business in 1887 on the 93 acre campus located at 24th Street and Van Buren in Phoenix to treat the most severely mentally ill residents.

Two new modern facilities now stand in the northwest 23 acres of the campus, dedicated to the seriously mentally ill adult civil and adolescent patients who are court-ordered to the Hospital for treatment. In July 2002, the brand new inpatient 16-bed adolescent facility opened and in February 2003, the brand new inpatient 200-bed adult civil facility opened for business. The first new treatment facilities built on the premises since the 1952, this historic achievement provides hope to both patients and staff, and serves as a lasting tribute to the collaborative leadership that made this project a reality.

First State of Arizona Design-Build Project for a Facility

Laws 2000, Chapter 1 of the 44th Second Legislative Regular Session appropriated $80 million to the Arizona Department of Administration (ADOA), Arizona State Hospital Capital Construction Fund for the demolition, renovation and construction of the Arizona State Hospital and was overseen by the Arizona State Hospital Capital Construction Commission, who reviewed all capital construction and renovation plans and made recommendations to the Arizona Department of Administration and the Joint Committee on Capital Review (JCCR) throughout the entire project.

Undertaken as the first design-build project by the state for a facility, construction was awarded to the design build team of Gould Evans Architects, Cannon Design and McCarthy Construction, following an extensive selection and planning process. Mental health advocates, patients and families, and staff of the Arizona Department of Health Services and the Arizona Department of Administration worked tirelessly to make these new facilities a reality.

The design-build concept saved Arizona taxpayers money while building an outstanding project. The project was selected as one of 3 finalists from over 100 projects nominated to receive the Valley Forward Association's Environmental Excellence Award, in recognition of the outstanding contributions from both the private and public sector in focusing on quality of life issues in the Valley.

Rehabilitative Mall Design Concept

Designed around a rehabilitative mall concept of a town community atmosphere, the new facilities were planned to assist patients in training for a new daily life in a controlled environment.

The new adult civil facility consists of three patient living units (a one-story medical-neural-geriatric unit and two, two-story units for medical to high-acuity patients) placed along a social rehabilitation treatment "street."

A series of courtyard spaces link the patient treatment units back to the major activities of daily life: dining areas, patient finance, library, training and education, rehabilitation activities, clothing store (donated clothing for patients), an on-site courtroom (very cost-effective, in terms of staff time and safety), a barber shop, a patient-run café, a human rights office, a volunteer services coordinator, gardening areas, and special medical clinic with exam rooms, radiology, dental and audiology departments.

This comprehensive design assists rehabilitation of seriously mentally ill patients and increases the quality of life and measures of privacy and transition back into the community. This treatment philosophy was woven throughout the design to create a sense of community.

Future expansion of an additional 100 adult civil bed facility, and an additional 16-bed adolescent facility were written into the request for proposals and included in the architectural plans that were submitted as part of the design build project.

House Bill 2015 lowered the original $80M appropriation to $77,500 M by eliminating a 5th Arizona Community Protection and Treatment Center (ACPTC) dormitory. Senate Bill 1001 further reduced the $80M appropriation by $10,400,000, plus $3M in interest earned, to $67,100,000 by withdrawing funding for the forensic renovation project.

Components of the project included:

  • Adult Civil Behavioral Health Facility with 200-bed capacity (expandable to 300 in the future) in the northwest quadrant of the Arizona State Hospital Campus. Work included abatement and demolition of existing structures.
  • Adolescent Behavioral Health Facility with 16-bed capacity in the northwest quadrant of the Arizona State Hospital Campus. This unit opened in 2002 and closed in September 2009. There have been some renovations made to accommodate the Conditional Release Unit (CRU) which will take occupancy sometime in the Summer of 2010.

Cholla Hall renovated as the Administrative Building of the Arizona Community Protection Treatment Center.

Training and Education renovation as support space for the Arizona Community Protection Treatment Center and for a complete secured fence perimeter enclosure of the Arizona Community Protection Treatment Center and site lighting.

General Site Work that included parking and utilities not in the tunnel system.

Utility Spline and 4 Pipe System for the abandonment of current tunnel system containing central plant utilities and replace 2-pipe system with direct burial 4-pipe system.

Telephone and Data (Telecommunications) upgrade the current telephone system and campus trunk lines to include fire alarm and PA system.

Forensic Hospital renovation was to have been located in the former Juniper (civil) buildings.