French Hospital Medical Center Swanson Family Chapel and Tower Bell

The French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo was initially founded in 1946 by a group of French Sisters of Mercy who came to San Luis Obispo to provide healthcare services. Today, French Hospital Medical Center is a 112-bed acute care hospital and part of the Dignity Health network.

Coffman’s electrical engineering team provided the electrical, low voltage, and audiovisual design, lighting design, and lighting control for the new French Hospital Medical Center interfaith chapel and its magnificent tower bell. The new chapel will accommodate up to 65 people. The impressive bell was custom forged and inscribed by a foundry renowned for forging bells since 1840. Both the chapel and tower bell are intended to enhance the patient’s body, mind, and soul. These new spaces are also intended to serve as a place of peace, meditation, and contemplation for the community.

The chapel and tower bell are constructed as part of a $130M expansion initiative known as “Your New French Hospital”, which also added a new four-story patient tower, parking structure, and various site improvements. The chapel was made possible with a gift of $2.75M to the Beyond Health campaign from the Swanson family.


  • Healthcare


  • Electrical Engineering
  • Lighting Design