New Central State Hospital

, Virginia Department of General Services

Petersburg, VA

Main entrance
Lobby
Dayroom
Treatment Mall
Open Space
Aerial

The new Central State Hospital reflects Virginia’s focus on providing high-quality, recovery-based treatment in behavioral health. By prioritizing safety, flexibility, and dignity, EYP’s design supports wellness and security with 252 beds, serving civil and maximum-security needs.

Building off Central’s centuries-old legacy, EYP designed a cohesive facility to modernize in-patient care within a single campus. Natural and biophilic elements were integrated into every living space, providing users with outdoor views in each room. Double-height common rooms and ample glazing cultivate a warm and friendly environment.

An expansive entryway featuring ambient light and high ceilings offers a welcoming space, while small-group rooms provide open-concept areas that enhance interpersonal connections. The team pioneered a “three-tier” organization of psychiatric patient spaces, featuring five “Program Communities,” a collection of common areas and counseling rooms serving as an additional middle-ground option between the 18-to-28 patient living units and the two 100+ patient-treatment malls.

Keeping staff in mind, the team designed for passive observation by providing clear sightlines throughout patient spaces and to critical doors from defined observation points. Layouts allowing easy observation of historically problematic areas, like dining rooms, help minimize the risk of incidents. And generous corridor widths and ceiling heights reduce safety concerns while enhancing the feeling of wellbeing.

The campus’ safe outdoor spaces cultivate therapeutic recreational opportunities, offering a variety of amenities and diverse pursuits, from game-centered activities to more contemplative courtyards with meditative gardens.

Building Facts

  • 471,000 SF
  • 252 Beds
  • In-patient facility