Fosters picked for $5bn redesign of major US hospital

The UK’s largest architectural practice is working with US-based practice CannonDesign on the scheme for healthcare organisation Mayo Clinic.

Practice founder Norman Foster has described the scheme as a ‘complete rethinking of the traditional hospital building’.

Central to the proposals are two new nine-storey clinical buildings linked by a glazed skybridge which also connects to the existing Gonda Building.

According to the architects, this high-level connection forms part of ‘a double-height social amenity level, which provides patients and their loved ones with space to rest, connect and recharge’.

The two 67m-tall blocks, designed ‘with the potential to expand to 128m over time’, will replace the Ozmun administrative complex and the Damon Ramp car park.

The project, dubbed the Bold. Forward. Unbound, is a multi-year strategic initiative to provide new facilities, which aims to provide ‘true, seamless integration of physical spaces and digital capabilities to advance clinician teamwork and meet patients’ unmet and evolving needs’.

The designs feature a series of community-centered ‘neighbourhoods’ with double-height winter gardens at their heart, offering ‘light-filled spaces with spectacular views of the city’.

Source:Dbox/Foster + Partners © 2023 Mayo Foundation for Medicine

Foster said: ‘This is a revolutionary moment for medical care and a complete rethinking of the traditional hospital building as we know it – offering maximum flexibility for future needs while ensuring that the interest of the patient remains at the heart of their healthcare.

‘Our design centres on natural light, views and connections with nature – to facilitate new breakthroughs and help deliver the highest level of care, with warmth and compassion.’

The Mayo Clinic scheme is not Fosters’ first hospital project. In 2010 the practice completed the RIBA Award-winning Circle Bath Hospital scheme for healthcare partnership Circle and proposed another for the same client in Didsbury.

In 2021 the practice took the wraps off an inpatient facility for the University of Pennsylvania Health System in West Philadelphia.

It is understood that site preparation for the Mayo Clinic has already begun with construction set to start in 2024. The first facilities could open in 2028 with final completion scheduled for 2030.