Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn joined other state and local officials to help dedicate the University of Chicago Medicine’s new state-of the-art, 1.2 million-square-foot Center for Care and Discovery. The architectural team included Rafael Viñoly Architects and Cannon Design. General contractor on the project was Gilbane-O’Neil, a joint venture. The center features two floors for future expansion needs.
The ceremony marked completion of one the nation’s most modern clinical and surgical centers dedicated to specialty care in areas such as cancer, gastrointestinal disease, neuroscience and advanced surgery and high-tech medical imaging. The Center for Care and Discovery, which will open to patients Feb. 23, will boost Chicago’s profile as an international healthcare destination.
The dedication ceremony took place in the hospital’s Sky Lobby on the 7th Floor, which is a departure from typical hospital lobbies that sit on the street level. The Sky Lobby is an expansive space that offers stunning views of the downtown skyline, Lake Michigan and Washington Park and will serve as a welcoming hub for patients and other guests.
Since ground was broken in 2009, the construction project has provided a significant lift to the state economy. The $700-million hospital project is estimated to be among the largest investments ever made on Chicago’s South Side.
More than 9,000 faculty and staff work on the medical campus, which includes the Biological Sciences Division, making the University of Chicago Medicine one of the city’s largest private employers. The new hospital is expected to bring roughly 300 new jobs to the University of Chicago Medicine campus.
The new hospital contains 240 single-occupancy patient rooms spacious enough to accommodate families for overnight stays. The rooms, located on the perimeter of the building for greater privacy, have large windows that provide stunning views of the University of Chicago campus, Lake Michigan, Washington Park and the downtown Chicago skyline.
Flat-screen TVs, reading lights, dual-layer window treatments and a high-tech paging system that eliminates the need for overhead announcements underscore the University of Chicago Medicine’s commitment to patient-centric care.
For physicians, nurses and researchers, the Center for Care and Discovery is a technological tour de force, with the space that will encourage true multidisciplinary treatment. It has 21 operating rooms with integrated diagnostic and interventional platforms for specialty care and space for seven more. The new hospital is largely made up of repeating modular cubes that can be repurposed over time to accommodate innovations and changing medical needs.