Austin State Hospital Brain Health Campus Master Plan
The Austin State Hospital (ASH) Brain Health Campus Master Plan seeks to create a model environment for the continuum of brain health care in Central Texas by accommodating a new hospital on the historic campus while modernizing and de-stigmatizing the existing mental health facilities. Building community resilience and connectivity between the institution and its surroundings are central elements of the master plan.
Located in central Austin, the 95-acre ASH site is situated within vibrant residential neighborhoods, mixed-use developments and busy streets on all sides. The existing campus serves 75 counties spanning an area the size of Ohio.
The plan outlines a strategy for replacing current hospital functions and provides a long-term vision for campus growth. Its four primary goals include: create a brain health campus; create a sense of connections with the community; create incentives for strategic partnerships; and enable a continuum of care. The plan seeks to create a renewed sense of place on the campus and support land stewardship.
The plan principles include: reinforcing campus presence along primary streets; connecting to the city grid and surrounding community by creating an urban, walkable environment; creating signature campus-oriented open spaces in addition to a central open campus square; establishing an accessible spine for pedestrian and vehicular traffic to link the northern and southern ends of the site; and finally preserving existing campus assets including mature trees and historic buildings where feasible.
The redesign and development of the ASH site is being led by Texas Health and Human Services Commission and The University of Texas at Austin's Dell Medical School in partnerships with community groups including the National Alliance for Mental Illness.
The master planning effort was led by planning and healthcare experts from Page in partnership with psychiatric facility specialists from architecture+ and hospital cost estimators from Vermeulens. The team met regularly with the ASH Brain Health Redesign Steering Committee, as well as Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) leadership and chairs from all ASH subcommittees.