Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) joined Emory University Hospital Midtown (EUHM) and Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University to break ground on the new Winship at Midtown facility for cancer care. Designed by SOM along with local architecture partner May Architecture, the new building will bring more than 450,000 square feet of inpatient, outpatient, and research facilities to the existing EUHM campus and Winship Cancer Institute—the only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center in the state of Georgia. Completion of the Atlanta-based facility is planned for 2023.

SOM is providing architectural and structural engineering services for the new facility, which is set at a prime location on the EUHM campus. The building will house comprehensive oncology facilities including inpatient beds, surgical capacity, infusion treatment, outpatient clinics, diagnostic imaging, linear accelerators, and areas for wellness, rehabilitation, and clinical research. The project will also enable Winship Cancer Institute to build and sustain its cancer programs through recruitment, retention, engagement, and development of faculty, staff, and trainees.

Central to the building’s design are its two-story, disease-centered “care communities.” Within these, services normally distributed throughout a hospital are organized into one-stop destinations that combine exam, consultation, infusion, and supportive functions—resulting in a series of intimate communities that are tailored to the journey of each patient.

The duplex care communities informed SOM’s design of the exterior, which is expressed in two-story facade increments that give the tower an approachable scale on Atlanta’s Peachtree Street. At the two-story patient and staff lounges that bracket the ends of each care community, wooden ceilings and walls introduce a warmth that contrasts with the facility’s taut, high-performance glass facades.

The building will meet Peachtree Street with a transparent storefront, a welcoming lobby, and retail – seamlessly integrating the health facility with the public realm, and reconsidering how an urban medical center relates to its neighborhood.

The new facility will feature a high-performance facade with optimized glazing and window-wall ratios, as well as efficient mechanical systems such as energy-efficient recovery mechanical equipment with chilled beams and direct-outside air units. Water efficiency and storm water management were also prioritized in the building’s design.

Within the building, patients’ recovery is supported by daylight, views, and thermal comfort – elements that will grant Winship at Midtown a high Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ). Together, these sustainable design features put the building on track for LEED® Silver certification, as well as a 130 Energy Use Intensity (EUI). As a result, the building will expend almost 40% less energy annually than the average hospital in Atlanta.

SOM embarked on a collaborative design process involving over 150 healthcare executives, clinicians, patient family advisors, builders, and expert consultants. Supporting SOM on the project are engineering consultants from Atlanta-based Kimley-Horn and Newcomb & Boyd, medical planning and programming specialists from MPR International, and consultants on vertical transportation, food service design, and medical equipment planning from Lerch Bates, Rippe Associates, and Mitchell Planning.