Kaiser Permanente


Kaiser Los Angeles Medical Center

“This new hospital features abundant use of natural light, scenic views… a lovely healing garden, a pediatric play area, and other components that collectively create a wonderful environment.”

—Dr. Donald H. Marcus, Medical Director


Kaiser Permanente's largest hospital, the 400-bed LAMC, could aptly be compared to a dinosaur prior to SmithGroupJJR's replacement design. While it provided an array of vital medical and surgical services across a broad spectrum of disciplines, the flagship hospital was an unsustainable, jumbled sprawl across three full city blocks in Los Angeles—an outmoded healthcare platform in need of a focused evolution.

The replacement had to fit within a highly constrained urban footprint: 100,000 square feet and no higher than seven above-grade stories. To maximize the use of this limited space, the design team used the concept of "hospitals within a hospital." Like cells making up a larger organism, the series of specialty hospitals is vertically integrated within the building, encompassing a suite of 20 ORs and interventional imaging rooms, an integrated heart hospital, a children's hospital, and a women's hospital.

Departments share support services, optimizing efficiency of space and delivering a streamlined operational flow. The result is a ratio of net square feet to total floor area as tight as a tertiary level hospital can practically achieve, and a level of efficacy that sets a high bar for the healthcare industry.

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