The Wexner Medical Center campus. Photo: The Ohio State University
Columbus, Ohio — The Ohio State University (OSU) is taking a major step forward with the development of a new hospital and ambulatory center that, combined with modern educational space, will enhance a unified Wexner Medical Center complex providing cutting-edge research, outstanding clinical training and world-class patient care. The university announced requests for qualifications seeking design professionals for the inpatient tower and outpatient care facility that are key components of this bold plan.
The time for sweeping modernization is now, university officials say. The medical center closed out its most financially successful fiscal year in June, and the demand for patient care and medical education is greater than ever.
“The Wexner Medical Center has unprecedented opportunity for transformative growth,” said Ohio State President Michael V. Drake.
“A number of our most important indicators are at historic highs and accelerating. At the same time, our strategic plan calls for bold thinking to define the future of academic health care. We envision a medical campus in which all building projects integrate and support each other — and where the very best people work together across areas of expertise to further elevate the quality of the medical center and the entire university.”
The tower would be the largest single facilities project ever undertaken at Ohio State. Potential details on the scope and scale include:
- Up to 840 beds, replacing and expanding on the 440 beds in Rhodes Hall and Doan Hall; all 840 beds would be in private-room settings to elevate patient-centered care, safety and training for the next generation of physicians
- 60 neonatal intensive care unit bassinets
- State-of-the-art diagnostic, treatment and inpatient service areas (emergency department, imaging, operating rooms, critical care and medical/surgical beds)
- Connector to The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute that also connects to Rhodes Hall, Doan Hall and the Brain and Spine Hospital
- Leading-edge digital technologies to advance care and teaching
- Additional green space as well as a new parking garage west of McCampbell Hall
The project area for the hospital tower is primarily bound by Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute tower to the east, relocated Cannon Drive to the west, 12th Avenue to the north and Medical Center Drive to the south.
The ambulatory center, located on West Campus, would provide outpatient operating rooms, urgent care with a 23-hour observation unit, an endoscopy unit, a pre-anesthesia center, diagnostic imaging and interventional radiology.
This project area is primarily bound by Kenny Road to the east, the Carmack parking lots to the west, Carmack Road to the north and the electrical sub-station to the south. Parking, roadway work and green space considerations will be part of this project.
Cost estimates for each project will be determined through the design process and require approval by university trustees. The hospital tower and ambulatory center are among potential investments aligned with Ohio State’s strategic plan and identified in Framework 2.0, a vision for the physical space of the Columbus campus.
These include an interdisciplinary health sciences center, another key element of an aligned academic medical enterprise. It would feature upgraded and flexible facilities to create a collaborative campus for education throughout the health sciences, including the colleges of Medicine, Optometry and Nursing, and the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences.
Also in the framework plan: an interdisciplinary research facility with innovative and modern environments to serve multiple disciplines as well as a high-quality arts district for interaction across the arts — with long-term plans to open Ohio State’s front door to the heart of the University District at 15th Avenue and High Street.
The university issued RFQs for these projects on Nov. 9.
“Together, these projects advance key strategic focus areas for the university, including teaching and learning, research and creative expression, and academic health care,” said Bruce A. McPheron, executive vice president and provost. “Ohio State continues to be committed to defining the flagship public research university in the 21st century.”