PVA Architecture Case Study: New SCI/D Long-Term Care Center

VA Medical Center
Dallas, Texas

A core part of PVA Architecture’s mission is to ensure that all U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs facilities meet, or more importantly exceed, accessibility standards for wheelchair users and others with mobility impairments—whether or not the facilities serve Veterans with spinal cord injury or disease (SCI/D). We are involved in all architectural design projects at VA SCI/D Centers from start to finish: reviewing drawings, participating in design meetings, and providing our expertise in SCI/D facility design.

The new Long-Term Care Center in Dallas will provide a state-of-the art facility to meet the ongoing health care needs of Veterans with SCI/D while offering a comfortable home with an emphasis on privacy, security, and non-institutional aesthetic. The new center creates a series of small “houses” that each include 6 private resident bedrooms, giving residents a more intimate experience. The houses are centered around nursing care centers and resident kitchen, dining and living areas, which provide the opportunity for social interaction and mentoring within a “neighborhood” of houses.

The new 60-bed Long-Term Care Center is attached to the adjacent SCI/D Acute Care Center and will expand the SCI/D outpatient clinic, pharmacy, and other acute care functions.


  • New 120,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art SCI/D Long-Term Care Center.
  • 60 private resident bedrooms.
  • Each resident bedroom includes a private resident bathroom.
  • Exterior courtyards provide serene, private recreation and socialization areas.
  • New adjacent parking structure is connected via accessible bridge and includes dedicated parking for Veterans with SCI/D.

Improvements for Veterans with Disabilities:

  • Addresses urgent need for long-term care for the aging population of Veterans with SCI/D.
  • Arrangement of resident bedrooms in small houses and neighborhoods provides home-like environment while reducing institutional stigma.
  • Private resident bedrooms with dedicated bathrooms improve resident privacy and infection control.
  • Resident bedrooms include large window areas to improve daylight and views to the exterior.
  • Resident bedrooms include a private exterior patio or balcony to provide individual access to the exterior.
  • Dedicated Long-Term Care therapy and meeting areas.
  • Direct access to dedicated parking.
  • Direct access to Aquatic and Gymnasium Center in adjacent SCI/D Acute Care Center.
  • Integration of exterior passive and active recreational areas.

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With the unique design knowledge of PVA Architects, many public buildings, stadiums, courthouses, memorials, and other structures are made more accessible and enjoyable by the public—providing equal access to all.