Payette , a leading architectural design firm specializing in complex buildings for medical and scientific research, academic teaching, and healthcare, announced today the Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony was held on June 26, 2009. The new 176,000 square foot Cancer Institute is located on the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Campus in University Park, Pa.
Part of a larger Clinical Quadrangle Master Plan planned by Payette, the Cancer Institute will be LEED Certified. The project is a part of a trio of improvements designed by Payette that will expand the research and patient care capabilities of the Medical Center campus. These improvements include the Cancer Institute; a 252,000 square foot Children’s Hospital (slated for completion in 2011); and a 2,000-car parking garage, completed earlier this year.
Designed to provide patients and their families with a welcoming, peaceful environment while they receive the latest in advanced medical treatments, the new Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute is a an experiment in full translational medicine, where research and clinical functions are strategically mixed to encourage collaboration between the two. Clinical functions are located on the lower three floors, and research labs are located on the top two levels. Researchers and clinical doctors share offices on the top two floors, with ancillary support spaces located to encourage spontaneous encounters across groups.
The outpatient oncology treatment facility contains four linear accelerator vaults, two outpatient clinics, two infusion therapy suites and a day-hospital. These spaces sit below research laboratories for chemical carcinogenesis, experimental therapeutics and cancer control and prevention. The keynote space is five-story “beehive” atrium, which links all research and clinical floors and provides vertical and horizontal connections between the two groups.
Framed by a substantial series of courtyard gardens, a new entry lobby for the entire medical center also links the Cancer Institute and Children’s Hospital. Along with the lobby itself, these landscapes are green roofs over underground expansion space for radiology and service departments. Each is tailored to suit its occupants: the healing garden dedicated for cancer patients, a courtyard for the general public and the future children’s activity garden. This unique series of outdoor spaces also permits the growing medical center to preserve its connection to the outdoors.
"Penn State and the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Campus are leaders in developing new ways to study and treat diseases," said Kevin B. Sullivan, AIA, principal at Payette. "By looking at the entire campus as a connected organism, from medical education to research to patient care, Payette’s plan has created a new model of integration."
The Children’s Hospital, scheduled for completion in 2011, will contain 72 inpatient beds, six operating suites and associated pre- and post-operative care areas, a pharmacy and clinical labs serving the whole campus, and an outpatient Hematology/Oncology Clinic.
Payette teamed with associate architect Array Healthcare Facilities Solutions on the Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute. Other project team members include Gilbane, construction manager; Bard, Rao + Athanas (BR+A) Consulting Engineers, mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineer; Gannett Fleming, Inc., structural, civil and traffic engineer; Walker Parking Consultants, parking; and Hargreaves Associates, landscape architects.
About Payette 
Founded in the 1930s, Payette is a leading architectural design firm specializing in the programming, planning, and design of complex buildings for medical and scientific research, academic teaching, healthcare, and corporate research. Current clients include Children’s Hospital, Boston, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and the University of Massachusetts Wing Memorial Medical Center.