Health Sciences Biomedical Research Facility, University of California, United States of America


The health sciences biomedical research facility at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) was opened in March 2014.

The University of California, San Diego (UCSD) opened a health sciences biomedical research facility in La Jolla, California, in March 2014.

The facility accommodates new and expanded multi-departmental programmes including bioinformatics, genomic medicine, gastrointestinal medicine, childhood diseases, pathology, immunology, inflammation, psychiatry, cardiology, neurosciences, infectious diseases and glycobiology.

It was constructed with an investment of $114.6m to foster communication and an exchange of ideas among researchers.

Biomedical research facility details

"The facility includes five floors of laboratories and seven floors of office space. It includes a vivarium, core lab space, and support MEP systems, which are located in the basement."

The biomedical research facility is built on a 3.3 acre site located within the School of Medicine campus at the UCSD, and has a total floor space of 196,000ft².

The facility includes five floors of laboratories and seven floors of office space. It includes a vivarium, core lab space, and support MEP systems, which are located in the basement.

The facility is equipped with sophisticated wet bench laboratories, computational space, laboratory support, core facilities and conference spaces.

Design and features of the biomedical research facility at University of California

The health sciences research facility features computer-controlled exterior solar shading systems on the east, west and south facades.

The western facade features an articulated academic lawn and pedestrian-scaled arcade.

An exterior envelope includes a terracotta rain system, granite, coated aluminium panels, concrete and clear glass.

The main entrance of the building is located on the west, connecting to the pharmaceutical services building and the secondary entrance is located on the north end.

The facility features open and light-filled interaction spaces on every floor with movable seating.

It includes a large outdoor terrace on the second floor that can be used for large gatherings, a transparent glass elevator, a monumental stair and multiple scales of gathering areas. The building includes operable windows.

Construction details and contractors involved



The Wistar Institute is the first biomedical research institute in the US and Philadelphia's first NCI-designated cancer centre.


Construction of the research facility began in April 2011 and the building was topped out in August 2012. It was opened in March 2014.

ZGF Architects provided the design for the health sciences biomedical research facility. McCarthy Building Companies was awarded the general construction contact.

KPFF Consulting Engineers was the structural engineer for the project, IBE Consulting Engineers was the mechanical and plumbing engineer and Integrated Engineering Consultants was the electrical engineer.

Spurlock Poirier served as the landscape architect and RFD was the laboratory planning consultant.

Civil engineering services were provided by Burkett and Wong Engineers and lighting designs were provided by Francis Krahe & Associates.

The subcontractors involved were Benson Industries, University Mechanical, Dynalectric Company, Best Interiors and ISEC Casework.

Sustainability features of the biomedical research facility

The research facility building was designed and constructed to achieve LEED Platinum certification from US Green Building Council. The building was constructed using sustainable methods and innovative systems.

Sustainable features include extensive reuse of water for landscape irrigation and MEP systems to ensure optimum energy efficiency. It also includes optimised ventilation, water use reduction, integrated daylight and sustainable building materials.