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The Heartfelt House honored with two American Institute of Architects Eugene People’s Choice Awards

A view of the outdoor courtyard of the Heartfelt House, with PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend in the background

February 19, 2020

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – The Heartfelt House guest house on the PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend campus received two honors in the 2019 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Eugene People’s Choice Awards.

2fORM Architecture was recognized in the “Public Institution” category and landscape architecture firm Schirmer Satre Group was recognized in the “Institutional Landscape” category.

“We’re so pleased to see these hardworking architectural teams honored for their vision and ability to create such a beautiful, welcoming “home-away-from home” for out-of-town family members of Sacred Heart patients,” said Tim France, chief development officer for PeaceHealth Oregon Network. “Guests tell us they’re incredibly grateful for the respite they’ve found at the Heartfelt House.”

The AIA Eugene’s annual People’s Choice Awards aims to educate and inspire by showcasing architecture interiors and landscape architecture projects created by regional firms throughout the area.

The Heartfelt House was among 50 projects on display at the Broadway Commerce Center in downtown Eugene during September’s Sunday Streets Celebration. Community members cast over 3,000 ballots and the Heartfelt House turned out to be a crowd favorite.

The 20,200-square-foot Heartfelt House, a collaboration between PeaceHealth and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Oregon & Southwest Washington, welcomed its first patient families on Sept. 10.

The guest house is just a five-minute walk away from Sacred Heart Medical Center at RiverBend, providing peace of mind to family members who are making frequent visits to newborns in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or loved ones recovering from surgery. The building is comprised of 20 guest suites arranged along two private wings connected by a central common area. This communal space, dubbed “the living room,” was established to foster a strong sense of community.  Each wing of the building is equipped with a shared kitchen, a lounge and laundry facilities.

The Heartfelt House’s amenities extend to an inviting outdoor courtyard. The back side of the indoor-outdoor fireplace is a focal point of the covered patio area. Guests can relax on patio chairs or courtyard benches while children swing, play on the lawn or climb a whimsical play structure.  

“We were focused on establishing a strong sense of ‘home,’” said Richard Shugar, AIA, LEED AP, principal architect at 2fORM Architecture. “To achieve that, we chose warm materials, including the stone fireplace and wood trellises. We incorporated classically residential features, such as window seats and dormer windows, into the design. The fireplace is a gathering place both inside and outside the house.”

Richard Satre, principal landscape architect at Schirmer Satre Group, said it was an honor to be part of the Heartfelt House design team. 

“Family members who have traveled a distance to be near loved ones while they are receiving care at RiverBend need-- indeed deserve--a place to be nearby,” Satre said. “Ronald McDonald House Charities and the Sacred Heart Medical Center Foundation are loving, caring organizations who care deeply about their mission to provide compassionate care. From the initial concept to the final product, care, comfort and support was the primary goal of the facility. The landscape was designed to extend the indoor restful respite to the outdoors. The resulting environment is a testament to the hard work and common vision of the entire team.”

PeaceHealth is grateful for these architects and everyone who made the Heartfelt House a reality, including over 600 donors. The Heartfelt House was funded entirely through philanthropy. View here for more information about the Heartfelt House. 

About PeaceHealth: PeaceHealth, based in Vancouver, Wash., is a not-for-profit Catholic health system offering care to communities in Washington, Oregon and Alaska. PeaceHealth has approximately 16,000 caregivers, a group practice with more than 900 providers and 10 medical centers serving both urban and rural communities throughout the Northwest. In 1890, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace founded what has become PeaceHealth. The Sisters shared expertise and transferred wisdom from one medical center to another, always finding the best way to serve the unmet need for healthcare in their communities. Today, PeaceHealth is the legacy of the founding Sisters and continues with a spirit of respect, stewardship, collaboration and social justice in fulfilling its Mission. Visit us online at