by Dennis Dalman
Sartell Pediatrics has been honored in a featured story in the monthly “Minnesota Physicians” magazine as one of eight architecturally superb health-care buildings in Minnesota.
Sartell Pediatrics is owned by Dr. David Smith and his wife, Jill, program manager. The clinic is located on 2nd Ave. S. in Sartell in what used to be a drive-through bank and, later, a bar-nightclub.
In November 2012, the Smiths opened Sartell Pediatrics after a long process of considering precisely how to retro-fit a former drive-through bank and – years later – a bar into a homey, comfortable, aesthetically pleasing facility.
Their patients and their parents have commented constantly how welcome they feel when they come there for diagnoses and treatments.
Sartell Pediatrics was one of 50 submissions by health-care related facilities in the state for Minnesota Physicians magazine’s Health Care Architectural Honor Roll.
The article praised Sartell Pediatrics’ “unique” and “challenging” way of retro-fitting an older building into a new clinic that is pleasing, comfortable and welcoming to patients.
The magazine staff also praised the ways in every step of the design process the Smiths and their architects emphasized functionality combined with warmth and comfort.
The panel of architectural judges praised the opening of space and natural lighting on the south wall, the high ceilings, the vibrant colors in exam rooms, and the natural earth tones and stonework on the entry and lobby areas.
Sartell Pediatrics’ interior design was done by HMA Architects, based on input from the clinic’s owners, Dr. David and Jill Smith. The contractor for the 4,000-square-foot remodeling job was R.A. Morton Construction Managers. The cost of the retrofit project was $600,000.
Other medical facilities that made the magazine’s honor roll are Amberwing, Duluth; St. Luke’s Medical Center, Duluth; the Mother Baby Center, Minneapolis; Stillwater Medical Group, Mahtomedi Clinic; HealthEast Midway Clinic, St. Paul; Riverwood Healthcare Center, Aitkin; and the Hazelden Center for Youth and Families, Plymouth.
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.