The University at Buffalo (UB) in the US has broken ground on the new $375m school of medicine and biomedical sciences facility, designed by architectural firm HOK.
The new eight-storey, 540,000ft² medical school is being built on a site of about two acres at Main and High streets on the Buffalo Niagara medical campus.
The building will feature a seven-storey glass atrium that joins the facility’s two L-shaped structures and a terracotta and rainscreen façade.
HOK New York City office design director Kenneth Drucker said the design of the new building attempts to integrate with the neighborhood and respect the city’s architectural past.
"You are building a community. There is a coming together under one roof of clinical, basic science and educational elements. The atrium allows for social collisions among people from different disciplines," Drucker said.
After completion, the building will also feature research laboratories and classrooms, simulation centres for general patient care and surgical and robotic surgery training.
Plans also include a pedestrian passageway, which will extend through the university’s new medical school building between Main and Washington streets, leading to Allen Street.
Gilbane LiRo Ventures is the construction manager for the project, which is planned to be put out to bid later in 2013, while the facility is expected to open in late 2016.
The university said the building is the first project to be funded by a NYSUNY Challenge Grant provided by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo when he signed the NYSUNY 2020 bill into law in 2011.
UB claims that the medical school is the largest individual construction project in its 167 years of history and it will be one of the largest buildings built in the City of Buffalo in decades.
Image: The new medical school will bring 2,000 faculty, students and staff to downtown Buffalo. Photo: Courtesy of University at Buffalo.