North Bay Regional Health Centre

North Bay, Ontario, Canada

North Bay Regional Health Centre
North Bay Regional Health Centre
North Bay Regional Health Centre
North Bay Regional Health Centre

The North Bay Regional Health Centre is a joint redevelopment project between the North Bay General Hospital and the Northeast Mental Health Centre. The new Regional Health Centre will provide residents of Northeastern Ontario with state-of-the-art acute and mental health care close to home.

Each has its own facility on a common 80-acre greenfield site to offer a state-of-the-art acute care hospital and a modern, long-term mental health facility. The acute care component of the facility is a 574,292 ft2, four-story, concrete structure including a penthouse level. It accommodates 275 beds, as well as support services.

The mental health facility component is a 150,373 ft2, two-story, steel and wood structure with penthouses in the pitched roof structures. It accommodates 113 specialized and forensic mental health beds, associated outpatient services, a client services mall, a gymnasium, workshops, and psychiatric offices. The project includes construction of all site services, roadways and civil works.

Construction was completed in June 2010, ahead of schedule and within budget.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank both Plenary and PCL for completing the North Bay Regional Health Centre Project early and under budget. I visited the hospital on June 18 and can honestly say that it is a beautiful facility and that the smiling faces of the hospital staff and board members is more than adequate evidence that you have a satisfied client. Once again thank you."

John McKendrick, Senior Vice President of Project Delivery, Infrastructure Ontario

Design features

The building has been designed to achieve LEED® certification.


The main inpatient pods at the District Hospital are positioned on the south side of the building to ensure patient access to good natural sunlight. There is an increased percentage of single rooms and more spacious double rooms designed to allow each patient a window view and a connection to the outdoors. Inpatient rooms are large enough to accommodate family caregivers and overnight stays with loved ones.

Secure courtyard garden areas, easily accessible from the main-floor inpatient units, are supplemented with large indoor plants to create a year round connection with nature.


The two-storey Regional Mental Health Centre has a welcoming atrium and "Town Square" in the centre of its complex for patients and their families to visit. The mental health inpatient units or "lodges" are interconnected by a corridor system that creates secure inner courtyards helping to create this village-like environment.

At the heart of the Town Square, a two-storey patient amenity and therapeutic support building houses a client services mall, gymnasium, workshops, psychiatric offices, clinical space and administrative functions. The sloping nature of the site allows the design to locate all lodges at "grade level" for ease of access to the outdoors.

The design is based on a best practice psycho-social and recovery models, which provide the best clinical outcomes possible. Uniting the two environments facilitates interaction that will help to break down misconceptions about mental illness and prepare patients for reintegration into the community.

The design also facilitates a focus on the importance of normalization-rehabilitation, re-learning the activities of daily living and gradual reintegration into society. The inpatient units are smaller (eight to 16 patients), and are equipped with kitchens, living rooms, private bedrooms and ground-level access to the outdoors; all providing a more healing and home-like environment.


This project was one of Infrastructure Ontario's first AFP projects; as such, many of the templates (RFP, Project Agreement, etc.) were still being developed. With expertise developed on prior transactions and a flexible overall approach, Plenary enabled the project-and Ontario-specific issues to be successfully incorporated into the project's delivery.

The hospital had largely completed an existing design for the new hospital that all proponents were instructed to work with during the RFP process.

A key issue was the ongoing verification of the mechanical and electrical performance of the facility, given a third party architect had developed the drawings, and that performance risk was being transferred to the successful partner. Working with its FM service provider an extensive process of design review and testing was developed to allow Plenary to take this risk for the 30 year concession.

Local economic impacts

There were approximately 525 workers on site during the peak of construction, and more than 26 local trades involved in the development of this project. Over $80 million was spent locally on supplies during the construction phase and an estimated $150 million or more was paid in salaries and wages.

The project was the largest capital project ever completed in Northeastern Ontario.