Category: Category C: Unbuilt

Project: Cancer Center/Hospital/Cancer Research Institute

Owner: Confidential

Project Location: United States, details withheld

Submitting Architect: HKS, Inc.

JV or associate architect: UHS Building Solutions

MEP engineer: ccrd partners

Photographer: m2 studio

Anticipated construction cost: $500 million

Anticipated building area GSF: 1.2 million

To support the client's mission to reduce the burden of cancer by integrating scientific discoveries and technological advances into more effective treatments and prevention strategies, integration was the conceptual design driver for the project. Located along a major river in the Northeast, the new facility will provide an unparalleled combination of clinics, research labs, and a full-service hospital.

The design solution originated from the integration of water-known as “the source of life, the simplest form of regeneration and growth”-into the overall design. Water connects the buildings to one another, to the site, and to the river. It will be the driver for the orientation and siting of the three primary services: research, hospital and clinics. Meanwhile, circulation paths between buildings become glass boxes that dematerialize and sit within the landscape, providing an indoor-outdoor duality.


The orientation of each building seeks to maximize views and emphasize extensive existing vegetation and unique site conditions to create a natural sanctuary. Circulation paths between buildings promote interaction via bridges, plaza space, and glass-enclosed open spaces. Interior and exterior water features mask noise and promote tranquility.

The significantly sloping site allows unhindered views of the river, state park, and wooded areas from many parts of the buildings. A dramatic campus entry will promote a strong sense of arrival, and green space and views will be used as an orientation device. The new project will also maintain collegiality of campus via a dramatic circulation corridor, stitching the entire campus together and enhancing the campus community with adjacent public and private courtyards.

Additional sustainable measures include a proposed wind farm for on-site renewable electricity generation; erosion prevention and sedimentation control to improve water and air quality for the area; and opportunities for storm water management, water-efficient landscaping, and innovative wastewater technologies. Energy-efficient MEP systems will provide a safe and healthy environment for all.

Healthcare Design 2009 November;9(11):182-184