CentraCare Health - Long Prairie

Reshaping Healthcare for a Rural Community

When setting out to replace its mid-20th century hospital, CentraCare Health had a single goal—reshape healthcare for the Long Prairie, Minnesota community.

The design progressed holistically through a series of community workshops, open houses, deep engagement with staff and leadership, and data gathering and analysis.

Innovative planning concepts emerged from this process, including a universal platform model and an on-stage/off-stage clinic design, making this a model for efficient and flexible rooms, spatial and financial economy, increased staff collaboration, and enhanced patient care.

Aesthetically, the Long Prairie community identifies strongly with its farming heritage. Agrarian fields dominate the landscape. These familiar quilt-like patterns are abundantly referenced in the visual, textural, and tonal uses of materials throughout the building. Accent materials of iron-spot brick, walnut, and local, large-scale imagery both nod to the hospital’s rural site and aid in wayfinding. The textured accent materials are set within a stark white and bright palette of materials, helping to enhance the accent materials even more.

A lofty, bright lobby welcomes visitors and offers a shared gathering space, while expansive windows throughout provide ample daylight and framed views of the familiar landscape. A warm chapel, clutter-concealing headwall panels, and varied hues help create a calm experience for staff and visitors.

Since opening, the building has become a nexus for community activities extending beyond traditional medical care—making it a point of community pride.


Long Prairie, MN

Building Type

Critical Access Hospital


65,000 SF

  • 2018 Healthcare Environment Award, Acute Care
  • 2019 IIDA FAB Award
  • 2019 IIDA Healthcare Design Award

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