A former Sears store in Rochester, N.Y., will be transformed into one of the largest orthopaedics outpatient facilities in the Northeast.
The new University of Rochester Orthopaedics & Physical Performance Center will arise in retail space at the Marketplace Mall in Henrietta, N.Y. The development reflects two trends: the surge in e-commerce resulting in more vacant retail spaces, and a growing demand for more robust healthcare infrastructure across the country. The project team includes Architect of record SLAM (The S/L/A/M Collaborative) and design architect Perkins & Will.
"As healthcare facilities across the U.S. look to decentralize their services, the adaptive reuse of underutilized retail space represents a huge opportunity for institutions, like the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), to expand their outpatient reach by moving to the mall." said Scott Hansche, AIA, principal-in-charge at SLAM, in a news release.
The $227 million, 350,000 sf facility will include a 210,000 sf renovated space and a 140,000 sf new outpatient clinical services building that will house 140 exam rooms for orthopaedic care.
The design brings daylight into the existing Sears footprint through a series of skylights and an internal courtyard that also functions as rehabilitation space. The building’s sinuous facade design represents the idea of movement, echoing the orthopaedic care provided within its walls.
The new facility will address a growing need to expand infrastructure into underserved regions, helping to address healthcare equity gaps. One of the goals was to create a feeling of familiarity and accessibility for patients.
“Repurposing a traditional community anchor, such as a mall, helps upend perceptions of healthcare facilities as centralized urban complexes,” said Robert Goodwin, FAIA, design director of Perkins & Will's New York studio. “We are integrating healthcare into the existing fabric of the community rather than asking patients to travel to a facility that might be hard to reach.” Accessibility was amplified through a series of decentralized entry points and the addition of a dedicated bus stop outside of the outpatient facility.
Repurposing an existing site meant that there was reduced need for permitting and no new roads were required. The renovated 200,000 sf section includes a surgical platform with three operating rooms, a three-room procedure suite, advanced imaging, clinical research, education, administration, physical therapy, and a human performance and injury prevention center.
The first phase, relocating the orthopaedic administrative offices to an adjacent renovated lease space, was completed and occupied in fall 2021. The second phase, the conversion of the former Sears store to an outpatient surgical center, will be complete by fall 2022. A third phase, construction of a rehab and sports performance center is expected to open next spring, and a four-story, 144-bed clinic space is scheduled for completion in fall 2023.
Owner and/or developer: Wilmorite
Design architect: Perkins & Will's New York studio
Architect of record: SLAM (The S/L/A/M Collaborative)
Local Associate Architect: Dwyer Architectural
MEP/IT Engineer : ME Engineering
Structural Engineer: Jensen BRV
General contractor/construction manager: Le Chase
Civil Engineer and Landscape Architect: Bergmann Associates