University of Arizona Medical Center South Campus / Cannon Design + CDG Architects

  • 25 Sep 2012
  • Educational Selected Works
© Timothy Hursley

Architects: Cannon Design, CDG Architects
Location: , United States
Principal in Charge: Michael J. Smith
Project Director: Beth Radovanovich
Lead Designer: Carl Hampson
Project Manager: James Pricco
Photographs: Timothy Hursley, Bill Timmerman

Lead Medical Planner: Jill Bergman
Senior Project Architect: JT Tsu
Technical Coordinator: Phil Griffen
Project Architect (Building Envelope): Thai Ta
Project Architect (Building Interior): Dean Takasato
Project Architect (CRC): Anselmo Alleva (CDG)
Interior Designer: Jack Poulin
Mental Health Planning Principal: Tim Rommel
QA/Q Mental Health Planning Principal: Tim Rommel
Programmer: Jessica Moore
Landscape Architect: Wheat Scharf
Structural Engineer: Holben, Martin, White Consulting Engineers, Inc
Civil Engineer: RS Engineering

Balancing the challenges of a complex interdisciplinary program, acute safety and security requirements, demanding environmental conditions, and a rigorous cost management agenda, Pima County’s new comprehensive mental health center is destined to change the practice of behavioral healthcare.

© Timothy Hursley

The design solution creates a normalized, non-institutional environment integrated into the community and reflecting the culture and climate of the Sonoran Desert. Completed in July 2011 under budget at only $187 per SF, the 204,000 SF facility features two functionally inter-related buildings, a 96 bed Psychiatric Hospital and a Crisis Response Center. Operating in tandem to serve multiple facets of behavioral care, the buildings are organized around a shared service court providing secure access for medical staff, law enforcement, courtroom personnel, and patient and material transfers.

© Bill Timmerman

Each building features layered zones for patients, staff, and visitors with dedicated circulation networks.  Access to outdoor terraces and courtyards is provided on all floors for all building occupants.  A full continuum of care is provided with acute and sub-acute inpatient services, outpatient services, crisis assessment and stabilization, and specialized facilities for law enforcement, paramedics and first responders.  Additionally, an integral courtroom serves patients entering hospitalization through the legal system.

© Timothy Hursley

Optimum building orientation, indigenous landscaping, locally produced building materials with high recycling content, and careful glazing strategies promote a sustainable healing environment.  Additionally, south-facing perforated sunscreens filter daylight reducing energy loads up to thirty percent.  The innovative use of standard off-the-shelf building products creates a unique environment enhancing performance and patient experience, while minimizing construction costs.

Site Plan

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "University of Arizona Medical Center South Campus / Cannon Design + CDG Architects" 25 Sep 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 26 May 2015. <>
  • Anfal

    I liked how they combined between the function, the structure, and the beauty in the design. All work together in a modern way from using the materials, forms, and colors.