Malone Psychiatric Center
Located at an undisclosed place in United States of America
Photo © 2004 Tom Kirsch, opacity.us
Malone Psychiatric Center* History
In 1927, construction began on this massive state hospital which stretched across 600-acres of rural farmland, and would provide over 5,700 beds. The old methods of massive single-building asylums (such as the Kirkbride plan) had been discarded by this time, and so the hospital used a cottage-style layout, which optimally placed patients and services within separate buildings, connected by paths, walkways, and tunnels. It opened in 1931, and was considered one of the best planned psychiatric hospitals in the world at the time.
Despite the massive capacity of the hospital, it was plagued by overcrowding like most other institutions during the mid-20th century; over 9,500 patients would be crammed into day rooms, hallways, and any other space that could be found during 1956. De-institutionalization movements emphasized outpatient care in the 1970s, and the patient population has dwindled to fewer than 600; mostly for the very disturbed who need 24-hour care. A plethora of concrete and stucco buildings have been left behind, deemed surplus by the state.
The unused property is undergoing assessment for rehabilitation; cleanup costs will mostly consist of lead based paint removal and asbestos abatement (estimated at $9 million alone).
* Note: the name "Malone Psychiatric Center" is a pseudonym; the real name of this location is currently undisclosed.