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2020 aec excellence awards

Saint Rock Hospital

Build health international - better world award

Courtesy of Renato Kasai/BHI

As this year’s recipient of the Better World award for the AEC Excellence Awards 2020, Build Health International truly embodies what it means to build a better world with the Saint Rock Hospital project in rural Haiti.

Responding to the region’s urgent need for expanded health services, this new 13,600-square-foot nonprofit health facility will include emergency and maternal health services, as well as expanded facilities for in-and out-patient care, mental health counseling, dental care, HIV treatment, and volunteer accommodations.


Non-profit and Autodesk Foundation customer Build Health International (BHI) believes that every person has the right to dignified healthcare and recognizes that inadequate infrastructure often stands in the way of high-quality care. BHI is taking on this challenge by collaborating with frontline healthcare nonprofits to deliver the medical structures critically needed in many low resource areas around the world.

Take, for example, their current project for the Saint Rock Haiti Foundation – Saint Rock Hospital in the Carrefour commune of Ouest, Haiti. Even though the community is located just 10 miles from Port-au-Prince, it can take villagers more than two hours to reach medical care due to its mountainous location and treacherous, unpaved roads. In addition, many services—especially maternal care—are either nonexistent, unreliable, or cost-prohibitive in the region.

Courtesy of Renato Kasai/BHI

The current, three-room primary clinic in the area has seen patient numbers rise from 100 in 2002 to more than 50,000 today. Those seeking care may arrive before sunrise and wait all day to be seen. And Haiti’s maternal mortality rate is the highest in the Western hemisphere.

In order to increase the capacity of the clinic, expand services, and solve limitations such as its energy supply, BHI partnered with Saint Rock Haiti Foundation to construct a new 13,600-square-foot primary care hospital down the road from the current clinic. Not only that, it all must be done with a very limited budget and a site located—quite literally—on the side of a mountain.

Collaboration is at the core of all of our work. With a heavy reliance on the AEC Collection, the Saint Rock Hospital project demonstrates how healthcare infrastructure transformation can become a reality under even highly challenging logistical, geographic, and budgetary conditions.

Allison Denisky, Sr. Architectural Designer, Build Health International


From site grading and construction to internal communications and design iterations, every stage of the Saint Rock Hospital project benefited from and was made possible by Autodesk software and the AEC Collection.

The team efficiently addressed the immense challenges with the site grading in Civil 3D, including the design of roads to ensure emergency vehicle and pedestrian traffic and the coordination of underground electrical, wastewater drainage, and utilities.

Courtesy of Renato Kasai/BHI

Showing the proposed design iterations in a 3D form to stakeholders—including staff of the clinic—allowed the design team to demonstrate the intended circulation flow of patients, staff, and materials, as well as the grade of roads and paths to ensure accessibility. Through Revit’s 3D views, renderings, and aerial perspectives, BHI could share significant detail about each space even for non-technical users, leading to improvements for privacy, security, and cultural preferences.

The sustainability of Saint Rock Hospital was a key design goal, keeping in mind its already low operational budget. A solar microgrid will be installed in the late phase of construction to help supply consistent electricity when the hospital is in full operation. BHI also used Insight 360 to iterate multiple options and maximize energy efficiency through natural daylighting and passive ventilation. With Revit, the team could design for the construction methods that are most prominent in Haiti, ensuring that construction can be carried out by a local team with local materials.

We always have to keep iterating and adapting to overcome the challenges. Sometimes it can seem impossible at first, but we can always make it possible with Autodesk software.

Fatlum Troshani, Project Engineer, Build Health International

3 Key Insights

  • In building the new Saint Rock Hospital, BHI will expand the community's healthcare capacity by 400%. The new hospital will be able to treat 200 patients a day, with increased quality of care, expanded maternity care, and a wider range of services on an environmentally and fiscally sustainable campus.

Courtesy of Renato Kasai/BHI

  • With the challenging topography, BHI leveraged drones for a detailed site survey followed by a second survey after the preliminary earthwork. The drone data informed BHI’s site models in Revit and grading design in Civil 3D as the team tested various design configurations to maximize the site and reduce construction costs.


  • BIM 360 was an essential tool for file sharing and coordination, particularly when the design team was forced to work remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite this unexpected challenge, the BHI team completed a successful drawing package submission to the client.


According to estimates from the United Nations, a woman in Haiti has a one in 80 chance of dying due to pregnancy or childbirth. We’re incredibly proud to help contribute to the creation of the new Maternal Center of Excellence within Saint Rock Hospital and the vital services it will provide to women in the region.

Jim Ansara, Managing Director, Build Health International

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