With an opportunity to create a new home, faculty, staff, and students at the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine in Athens, Ohio, were faced with a central question: How can the new facility wholly embrace wellness? The design team worked carefully with those project stakeholders to answer that question, creating a facility that was driven by the concept of “Pathways to Health and Wellness.”

Now completed, Heritage Hall is a transformative modern medical education facility that showcases the heightened importance of student wellness throughout, including fitness and healing spaces, healthy eating options, water filtration system and connections to outdoor spaces.

The airy central atrium, lit by a skylight and exterior windows, encourages transparency, openness, and movement, with stairs connecting to academic spaces on all floors. Biophilic principals are incorporated, as well, and outdoor spaces are part of the educational environment, encouraging student and staff connections to nature.

The building plans to pursue WELL Building certification, which would make Heritage Hall the first medical educational building in the country to achieve it. Leaders will also pursue LEED Silver certification.


Project details:

Facility name: Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine

Location: Athens, Ohio

Completion date: August 2021

Owner: Ohio University

Total building area: 120,000 sq. ft.

Total construction cost: $51 million

Cost/sq. ft.: $425/sq. ft.

Architects: Perkins&Will (design architect); DesignGroup (architect of record)

Interior designer: Perkins&Will/DesignGroup

General contractor: Donley’s

Engineer: Karpinski Engineering

Builder: Donley’s