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As health design rapidly progresses, Los Angeles-based CO Architects is leading innovation in the advancement of medical education, research, and clinical environments. Two of the firm’s health education facilities and one medical center are a step closer to completion, as they topped out with the last structural beams and moved to the next phase of construction. The three projects are Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building (BSPB) in Phoenix; University of Virginia Education Resource Center (UVA ERC) in Charlottesville, Va.; and Shriners for Children Medical Center in Pasadena, Calif.

“These projects represent CO Architects’ core strength in both educational and health care sectors,” said Scott Kelsey, FAIA, managing principal. “Keen understanding of the relationship between medical and science education and clinical practices has secured our firm’s lead in the national marketplace.”

The University of Virginia Education Resource Center features a green roof to absorb stormwater and to provide visual interest from UVA Medical Center’s patient rooms across the street.

The 10-story BSPB, designed in collaboration with Ayers Saint Gross, is the tallest addition to the inter-institutional Phoenix Biomedical Campus. The 245,000-square-foot building complements the adjacent, award-winning Health Science Education Building (also designed by CO Architects and Ayers Saint Gross) and allows research scientists to collaborate with private companies for new medical cures and treatments.

Its distinctive copper-clad design draws inspiration from the region’s mountains and canyons. The new biosciences structure will closely resemble desert rock formations in its massing through pronounced setbacks and projections. Cantilevered floors extending increasingly outward at the top of the building will shade the lower levels. Windows located at the north and south sides of the building will help control daylight and conserve energy. BSPB is scheduled to open in January 2017.

The 46,000-square-foot UVA ERC is designed to support educational programs and patient services in a building that acts as a bridge between a cancer center and garage. The main façade will be sheathed in high-performance, fritted glass and shaded by a metal canopy extending from the second level.

ERC features a green roof to absorb stormwater runoff and to provide visual interest from UVA Medical Center’s patient rooms across the street. Grass-planted, sloping planes will extend from the concrete-paved plaza at the front of the building to the second level and basement.

The Shriners for Children Medical Center’s building exterior consists of metal, glass, and stone.

UVA ERC is scheduled to open in early 2017. This is CO Architects’ second project for UVA, having designed the Claude Moore Medical Education Building in 2010.

The Shriners for Children Medical Center is a new medical complex that will combine a contemporary, three-story building collaboratively designed with SRG Partnership and a healing-centered landscape created by Rios Clementi Hale Studios. The new, 74,800-square-foot building is part of a campaign to renovate Shriners’ aging facilities to better meet its mission of providing care to young patients, as well as advancing education and research.

The building exterior consists of metal, glass, and stone to convey the institutional presence of the new medical center and create a refined visual texture. The façade modulates to convey interior interaction spaces and identify the main pedestrian entrance. Energy-efficient glazing, protective overhangs, and highly efficient mechanical systems are designed to save energy. Shriners is scheduled to open in spring 2017.

Information provided by CO Architects (coarchitects.com), nationally recognized for architectural planning, programming, and design in the higher education, science and technology, and health care sectors.

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