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Rady Children's Hospital & Health Center New Acute Care Pavilion

San Diego, CA

Rady Children's Hospital and Health Center has submitted plans to the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development for a new 279,000 sq. ft. acute care pavilion with 16 large operating rooms, 54 recovery beds, 28 hematology/oncology beds, 10 bone marrow transplant rooms, an outpatient hematology/oncology clinic, 84 acuity adaptable medical-surgical beds and 21 neonatal intensive care beds. Construction is planned to start in the fall of 2007 with a grand opening in the spring of 2010.


A superb team of architects, engineers, interior designers, landscape architects, and other specialty consultants collaborated to incorporate the latest evidence based design into the new hospital to provide an unsurpassed healing environment for patients and their families and a wonderful working environment for staff.

Special attention was placed on providing single patient rooms, superb air-handling and filtration, sound isolation and noise reduction, infection control measures, providing a very safe environment, and creating a wonderful, reduced stress healing environment.


Creating an environmentally friendly, energy efficient building was a major priority so the decision to obtain full LEED accreditation was made. This is a difficult certification for hospitals to obtain, but critical in an environment with scarce natural resources and expensive energy resources.


Surge capacity is being built into the project by designing a small percentage of the patient rooms to accommodate an additional bed. This capability is incorporated in both the medical surgical units and the NICU.


While limiting the initial capital outlay is, as to be expected, a significant concern, the more important design principal was reducing the total life cycle cost of the building. In many cases this not only makes for a more economical project, it also produces a safer, more reliable hospital. For example, incorporating solid surface counter tops in all areas where horizontal surfaces are exposed to liquids is a higher initial expense but it is safe due to preventing mold and mildew growth on caulking and preventing water from seeping through cracks into walls and cabinets where mold can grow, wood or other materials can swell and force premature replacement.


The architect is Anshen+Allen.


  • Goodman, M., & Marberry, S. (2010). Happy Anniversary Pebble Project. Healthcare Design, 10(6), 26–26,28.

    “It is hard to believe, but this year marks the 10th anniversary of The Center for Health Design's (CHD) Pebble Project. Launched in 2000 as a research collaboration between CHD and a few like-minded healthcare providers, the idea for the Pebble Project came during a joint meeting of CHD's Board of Directors and Research Council in 1999.”