WhiteSpace selected for new $15M health and training facility
A conceptual drawing of new $15M Hāmākua-Kohala Health Rural Health, Wellness and Teaching Center anticipated to break ground in mid-2024. (Courtesy Whitespace Architects)

WhiteSpace Architects has been selected to design Hawai‘i island’s new $15 million, 24,000-square-foot Hāmākua-Kohala Health Rural Health, Wellness and Teaching Center. WhiteSpace anticipates the clinic will break ground in mid-2024 and will welcome its first patients in 2025.

In addition to primary and preventive patient care, the center will provide comprehensive wellness care and training for doctors, nurses, pharmacists, medical assistants and other health center staff.

“Healthcare resources in North Hawai‘i have been stretched thin for too long, and the new center will help provide greater access to care for people across the entire region,” said Irene Carpenter, CEO of Hāmākua-Kohala Health in a statement. “In addition, we greatly look forward to training the next generation of medical providers, dentists and pharmacists from this very community as we ‘grow our own’ who understand the special needs of North Hawai‘i.”

The center will be located on the five-acre former site of the Kohala Club Hotel between Hāwī and Kapa‘au. WhiteSpace’s two-story design features interior courtyards, outdoor gathering spaces, covered lanai, radiating wings and a covered porte-cochère, and emphasizes natural light and ventilation.

Two of three existing Kohala Club Hotel buildings will be demolished. A separate 6,000-square-foot residential building for center students is planned for a future phase of the project.

Laurel Swan is WhiteSpace project architect and heads the firm’s Waimea branch. Other WhiteSpace team members are Ana Ruiz, project architect, and Stacey Villarino, and Rebecca “Becky” Ziebelman, both architectural designers.

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