Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital provides the residents of New Jersey with first-class oncology care programs without their having to travel to the neighboring urban centers of New York and Philadelphia. Providing a user-friendly environment in the context of a large regional teaching hospital presented a major challenge to the planning and design team.

In the existing hospital there were six active public entrances, all fronting on the same street, giving rise to confusion and cross-circulation. A new main entrance and lobby were designed as the focal point to tie together all of the circulation paths of the hospital. Visitors enter a classically inspired, two-story rotunda, where a concierge greets them. The Information Desk, the main waiting room, and circulation to other parts of the hospital are organized around the rotunda. The main lobby walls and Information Desk are trimmed with a wood-grain finish to provide a warm, first-class hospitality feeling to patients and guests. A fireplace in the lobby and sculptural water features provide an environment of home and spa to put visitors at ease.

The design of the patient room floors follows the curving façade of the building exterior, yielding interior corridors with a gentle curve; this cuts down on the expanse of a narrow, long corridor. All the rooms in the Oncology Med/Surg Units and the Bone-Marrow Transplant Unit provide private rooms only. All clinical utility services, such as medical gas outlets and headwall power outlets, are enclosed in wood-grain-finished cabinets.

All patient rooms have outboard toilets, providing increased window wall area for the interior, thus resulting in better visual communication between the nurses’ stations and patient rooms.

Project category: New construction (completed December 2002)

Chief administrator: Harvey Holzberg, President & CEO, (732) 937-8900

Firm: RJF Fletcher Thompson Architecture, LLC, (732) 287-3800

Design team: Irving Leong, AIA, Project Architect; Thomas A. Fantacone, AIA, Design Principal (RJF Fletcher Thompson Architecture, LLC); Collin L. Beers, AIA, Healthcare Designer; Paige Macfarlan, Interior Designer; Cathy L. Maloney, Interior Designer (Granary Associates)

Photography: ©2002 Tom Crane Photography; ©2003 George Shagawat Photography

Total building area (GSF): 200,000

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $300

Total cost (excluding land): $60,000,000