A New Academic Building for SoM
Michael Armstrong, chairman of the
Johns Hopkins Medicine board of trustees, at the gala at
which his gift for an educational building was
PHOTO BY LARRY CANNER
Much-needed facility becomes a reality with recently
By Greg Rienzi
The evolution of the East Baltimore campus continues
as yet another key puzzle piece has been put into place.
C. Michael Armstrong, chairman of the Johns Hopkins
Medicine board of trustees, has recently committed $20
million to the School of Medicine for the planning and
construction of a new education building, the first such
facility on the campus in nearly 25 years.
The gift was announced at an Oct. 22 event honoring
major donors to the Johns Hopkins Institutions.
The new education building is part of the
comprehensive 10-year master plan that will transform the
medical campus that currently features several aging
buildings — some more than 100 years old--that require
replacement or renovation. Two new clinical towers and a
2,400-space garage, all located off Orleans Street, lie at
the heart of the plan.
The estimated $1.2 billion overhaul calls for
eventually razing several campus buildings and a parking
garage. It is the largest and most expensive hospital
project in Maryland history.
The clinical towers are slated to open in June 2009.
The entire East Baltimore campus master plan is supported
by a capital plan that extends to 2012.
The new education building will be located on a parcel
between the Outpatient Center and the Cooley Center, the
current site of three outdoor tennis courts. The building
will likely be four floors, contain roughly 100,000 square
feet of space and house state-of-the-art medical
educational facilities, including an anatomy laboratory.
David Nichols, vice dean for education at the School
of Medicine, said the need for the new building is
"extraordinary" as the changes in medical education and
technology have been revolutionary since the last academic
building, the Preclinical Teaching Building, was
In the JHMI master plan, the
Cardiovascular and Critical Care Adult Tower and Children's
Tower (children's hospital on plan) are at bottom center.
The new medical education building is at left center. Other
buildings currently on the drawing board are the Harriet
Lane Children's Health Center (pediatric ambulatory care on
plan), the Hackerman-Patz Patient and Family Pavilion, a
School of Nursing addition and a Wilmer Eye Institute
research and outpatient facilty. The targeted completion
date is 2012.
"The design of the new building comes at the same time
we are designing a new medical curriculum. The new building
will augment the opportunity of our faculty to teach
21st-century medicine," Nichols said. "One of the goals of
any medical education building is to bring faculty from all
disciplines together in a space where a fertile exchange of
ideas can occur outside the classroom — and that will be our
intent with this new facility."
Specifically, Nichols said the new building would make
best use of the latest technology to educate students on
such diverse areas as genetic advances, imaging equipment
and doctor/patient communication.
The new building, he said, will also become the School
of Medicine's front door.
"When prospective students come to visit the campus,
we want them to walk into this building and say, This is
the School of Medicine, the place where we are training the
next generation of medicine leaders," he said. "Mike
Armstrong's very generous gift will allow that appropriate
type of representation to take place."
The School of Medicine expects to complete programming
for the building by the end of the year, at which point a
competitive search for an architect will begin.
Construction is expected to get under way in early 2007,
with a project completion date scheduled for 2008-2009.
Armstrong, the retired chairman of Comcast, AT&T and
Hughes Electronics and former chair of the IBM World Trade
Corp., has been involved with Johns Hopkins for 18 years.
In 2002, he endowed the C. Michael Armstrong Professorship
in Medicine to help the school continue a leadership role
in stem cell research, followed in 2004 by a $4 million
bequest to support research in that field. He is a former
chair of the JHM board of visitors and currently serves on
the university's board of trustees.
In a letter last week to the Johns Hopkins community,
Edward Miller, dean of the medical faculty and CEO of Johns
Hopkins Medicine, said this latest gift demonstrates
Armstrong's immeasurable level of commitment to the
"Mike's interests and insight go far beyond the
research arena. He recognizes the importance of educating
the next generation of medical leaders," Miller said. "Just
as advances in our knowledge and capabilities require new
research and patient care buildings, they also have made
new teaching facilities imperative. His latest gift
addresses this need. A new teaching building will have
tremendous impact on our students and will facilitate
In terms of the overall master plan, construction of
the 2,400-space parking garage on Orleans Street was
recently completed. The opening of the facility sets off a
chain reaction in which the Broadway Garage, Jefferson
Street Building and the Maryland Hospital Laundry building
can now be demolished in order for the clinical towers to
go up. Demolition of the Broadway Garage will begin today,
and the other two buildings will be razed early next
Johns Hopkins Medicine plans to break ground in spring
2006 on the two new clinical buildings, the Cardiovascular
and Critical Care Adult Tower and the Children's Tower. The
two buildings, designed by the Perkins+Will architectural
firm, will be linked to the rest of the hospital and
provide roughly 1.4 million square feet of space.
The 560,000-square-foot Children's Tower will contain
a pediatric trauma center, 205 inpatient beds, 10 operating
rooms, outpatient care for oncology and psychiatry, and the
Pediatric Clinical Research Unit, among other services. The
860,000-square-foot Cardiovascular and Critical Care Adult
Tower will have two floors occupied by the Johns Hopkins
Heart Institute, 320 beds, 14 endoscopy and bronchoscopy
rooms and a full complement of radiology equipment.
The master plan also calls for many of the older
buildings along Monument Street to be decommissioned from
inpatient use. Some, such as the Brady building, may be
razed. The Nelson/Harvey and Meyer buildings will be
renovated to extend their useful life. The historic
Billings, Marburg and Wilmer buildings recently underwent
exterior restoration and will remain undisturbed.
Also currently scheduled for construction is the
Hackerman-Patz Patient and Family Pavilion, a residence for
oncology patients and their families to be built at the
corner of Broadway and Orleans, just across the street from
the Weinberg Building. A branch of the Pratt Library now
stands on the site. Construction of the Patient and Family
Pavilion will commence upon completion of the new Pratt
branch farther west on Orleans, across from Dunbar High
Located at the southwest corner of Orleans and Wolfe
streets, across from the Children's Tower, will be the new
Harriet Lane Children's Health Center that will contain the
Harriet Lane Clinic, faculty offices and other specialty
clinics. The Children's Health Center is scheduled for
completion in June 2006.
Other planned construction includes a Wilmer Eye
Institute research and outpatient facility, located at the
present site of the 550 Building parking lot, and an
addition to the School of Nursing, two-thirds of which will
be occupied by Nursing and one-third by the Phoebe R.
Berman Bioethics Institute.
The master plan leaves open several other building
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