Project category: Remodel/Renovation (completed September 2002)

Chief administrator: Janet Gabrilove, MD, Head, Oncology Department, (212) 659-9657

Firm: Wank Adams Slavin Associates, LLP, (212) 420-1160

Design team: Leonard Franco, AIA, Partner; Rick Box, RA, Project Manager; Javier Robles, Project Designer; Harry Spring, PE, Lighting Designer (Wank Adams Slavin Associates, LLP); Steve Solomon, AIA, Healthcare Planner

Photography: Stephen Barker

Total building area (GSF): 15,500

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $220

Total cost (excluding land): $3,400,000

The Ruttenberg Center fully realizes the current thinking in outpatient cancer care. The design premise for the entire project was to create a serene, calm, nurturing environment for family members and for patients undergoing a physically and emotionally exhausting procedure. The design joins advanced medical technology with healing ambience.

Design elements have an Asian influence, featuring backlit, glazed rice-paper screens for soft, indirect lighting. Carpeting simulates a woven straw mat. Furniture and other pieces, made from wood and fabrics, create a warm, homelike environment.

The waiting area consists of clusters of comfortable, upholstered furniture where small groups of family, friends, and patients can gather for private, intimate conversations. Fourteen exam rooms are adjacent.

The administrative corridor occupies the central interior of the space, including a glass wall “storefront” that serves as a point of reference and orientation for visitors. This leads to the hematology lab and pharmacy, the so-called hub, or “nerve center,” of the facility. From here, the infusion center can be reached.

The infusion area includes 12 private bedrooms—some with windows, a bed, guest chairs, and private toilets. Two group infusion rooms contain sliding soji screens and cubicle curtains to allow for increased privacy, if desired. Another small lounge with a pantry provides family members another place to wait for the treatment to be completed.

The facility also includes private offices for doctors, staff, and administrators; a conference room for multimedia presentations; workrooms with configurations that allow visiting staff and residents to intermingle and interact; and an on-site pharmacy.