Project category: Project in progress (March 2007)

Chief administrator: Peter Delgado, Chief Executive Officer, (213) 226-2400

Firms: Lee, Burkhart, Liu, (310) 829-2249; Hellmuth, Obata + Kassabaum (HOK), (310) 838-9555

Design team: Ken Lee, Principal-in-Charge; Erich Burkhart, AIA, Senior Designer; Doug Hudson, Principal Designer (LBL); John Conley, AIA, Principal-in-Charge; Ernest Cirangle, AIA, Senior Designer (HOK)

Illustration: © Douglas E. Jamieson; Model Concepts, Inc.

Total building area (sq. ft.): 1,500,000

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $343

Total construction cost (excluding land): $515,000,000

A new 600-bed, state-of-the-art replacement facility for the Los Angeles County and USC Medical Center is currently under construction and on schedule to be completed by 2007. The venerable 1,200-bed hospital has successfully served residents of LA County since the 1920s. However, because of technologic obsolescence and damage caused by the 1994 Northridge earthquake, replacement of the hospital became the only viable, cost-effective option.

This $820 million project involves the complete replacement of four existing acute care hospitals on the current campus. The three significant building components include a new eight-story, 681,000-square-foot Inpatient Tower, a 334,000-square-foot Outpatient Clinic Building, and a structurally base-isolated, 430,000-square-foot Diagnostic and Treatment Center that links the two towers. At nearly 1.5 million square feet of new construction, this is one of the largest healthcare design projects in the country and will be a landmark civic project on the Southern California landscape.

At an urban scale, the project will be a highly visible focal point of a university health campus and will reenergize the adjacent neighborhoods. Open pedestrian breezeways, landscaped courtyards, and plazas will take advantage of Southern California's temperate climate.

Metal panels, precast concrete, and natural stone will create a building composition that achieves a civic, institutional appearance and balanced massing. Expressed structural and utility elements are inherent elements of the building's architecture.

Separate entry points for diverse patient populations will be provided. This facility has been designed with the flexibility to add another 80-bed patient tower.