By Roxanne Squires
MURRIETA, Calif. – Rady Children’s Hospital of San Diego (RCHSD) celebrated the unveiling of its new outpatient pediatric center on August 11 with a grand opening event open to the public.
Stantec Architecture of Irvine, Calif., and McCarthy Building Companies of San Diego partnered to deliver a three-story, 62,500-square-foot building to offer a total of 15 specialty clinics under one roof. The pediatric services include primary care, subspecialty care, developmental services and specialized programs for children on the autism spectrum.
The building is an extension of the main campus and incorporates some elements into the new facility that resemble the main campus, with features including a clock tower, a palm tree-lined entryway and an arching façade.
The project features other outdoor clinical spaces at the stepped terraces. The main interior staircase within the clock tower is glazed full height for patient and visitor safety and internally lit by colorful light fixtures.
The building was themed as the “Dream Center” and includes artwork and design elements featuring hot-air balloons that frequently mark the Murrieta skyline. The building is expected to achieve LEED Certification though design features such as green interior finishes, water use reduction through plumbing fixtures and landscaping, optimized energy performance, and proximity to public transportation. The facility is also outfitted to accept future telemedicine systems to allow staff and physicians to collaborate with Rady’s Main Campus.
RCHSD also has the specialized play equipment, staff, and room features to perform clinical studies and observation of their autistic children. Included in the program is a licensed Toddler Inclusionary Pre-School, which integrates children on the autism spectrum into a typical classroom and playground setting.
Joanne McAllister, principal-in-charge at Stantec Architecture, AIA, said that when the project was initially discussed between Rady Children’s and the community, they discovered that many of their patients were travelling over an hour to receive the specialty services at the main campus including those in the autism program.
“Since the project was somewhat remote to the larger cities and due to the increase in construction activity in general, it was difficult to meet the subcontractor bid requirements for the project,” said McAllister. “Fortunately, many subs had longstanding relationships with the contractor and hospital and we were able to get the quality and commitment from them.”
McAllister continued, stating that many community members attending the building opening mentioned that having those specialty services available close by created a noticeable convenience for patients and their families.
“I am so grateful and honored to work with an organization focused on the research and innovation that helps children and their families when they are at a time of their greatest need, and now within their own community,” McAllister concluded.