First-Of-Its-Kind, SBLM-Designed“Miami Center For Mental Health And Recovery” Nears Opening

(MENAFN- EIN Presswire)

James Cohen

Acclaimed architecture firm creates new paradigm for treatment of mental illness through thoughtful design and planning

MIAMI, FLORIDA , UNITED STATES , September 28, 2023 /EINPresswire/ -- SBLM Architects can finally celebrate the design and successful completion of the Miami Center for Mental Health and Recovery at Northwest 22nd Street and Seventh Avenue in Miami. An adaptive reuse of an existing 180,000-square-foot property owned by the state and leased to Miami-Dade County, the seven-story facility will soon accommodate 208 beds for patients with mental illnesses. The goal of the Center is to divert people with mental illnesses from the criminal justice system, facilitate recovery, and transition them to permanent housing. It is the first of its kind project in the United States!

Designed by SBLM Principal James Cohen, AIA LEED AP, who heads the firm's Miami office, the facility is highlighted by a holistic health and therapeutic environment. Each of the resident floors includes 48 beds in single- and double-bedroom pods, 10 private bathrooms, a dedicated nurse's station, and a communal living area with seating. The facility also has approximately 40,000 square feet of securely protected outdoor space for exercise and recreation. Among many other paradigm-shifting features are designated rooms for clinical treatment and treatment for co-occurring substance abuse and trauma-related disorders, large spaces for employment, vocational, and culinary training services, and areas for daytime activity programs. A central receiving center is situated at the main entrance to expedite processing by law enforcement and fire department professionals at in-take, and there are dedicated areas for the courts and social service agencies.

The culmination of a groundbreaking concept conceived and advocated by Judge Steven Leifman, Associate Administrative Judge in the criminal division of the 11th Circuit Court of Florida, Mr. Cohen has worked on the project through multiple stages for more than a decade.

“To walk through multiple floors of bright, well-ventilated interiors is the realization of a project that brings hope to a largely disregarded population,” said Mr. Cohen.“Every time I see a homeless person or read about another tragedy involving mental illness, I know this facility will make a critical difference for so many from the first day it opens!”

At a cost of approximately $51 million to build, the Miami Center for Mental Health and Recovery is anticipated to save Miami-Dade County millions of dollars per year by eliminating a substantial portion of the population from county detention facilities.

“This facility and its design are truly groundbreaking and will bring the promise of hope and recovery to some of our community's most vulnerable and underserved citizens,” said Judge Leifman.

SBLM's delivery of the Miami Center for Mental Health and Recovery reflects its commitment to creating holistic mental health protective facilities and blur the line between correctional and healing facilities. Attributes such as a hospitality feel, natural light and lighting that simulates daylight will reduce stress and increase the well-being of its patients. The facility has also been designed to reinforce the need for privacy, safety, and control of this population's personal environments, and even facilitate social interaction.

Judge Leifman's concept, in collaboration with SBLM's design, is anticipated to mitigate, if not eliminate the cycle of homelessness-to-jail for a substantial portion of Miami's populations with mental illnesses. More information may be found at: For more information, please go to: Mental Health Facility Architects | SBLM Architects P.C.

Established in 1993, SBLM Architects has five interconnected, Principal-headed Studio offices in New York City, Long Island, NY, Miami, FL, and Dallas, TX. With more than three decades in practice, SBLM has completed thousands of projects throughout the U.S., providing environmentally responsible solutions for such market categories as Healthcare, Education, Mixed-use and Residential, Retail and Commercial, and Civic environments. SBLM's dedicated family of architects and designers, creative problem-solvers, insightful planners, and seasoned collaborators continue to meet the needs of our clients' visions, delivering design solutions that inspire, connect, perform, and drive business.

Linda Alexander
Alexander Marketing Corp.
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