A new Surgery and Oncology Center is being built by the Arnon Development Group to complement the programs currently being offered to patients by Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital at 1217-1231 16th Street. Construction will begin in May and is projected to be complete by the summer of 2011.
Arnon’s Randall Miller discussed the need for the project in Santa Monica at a community meeting in January 2009. At that time he noted that over the next 30 years the senior population in Santa Monica will more than double. Seniors go to the hospital two to three times more frequently for procedures than those in middle age and the incidence of cancer in seniors also increases. This project, therefore, attempts to address these increased projected community healthcare needs.
When complete, the project will contain a three-story, 45,000 square feet, surgery and oncology center with a 250 space, six level subterranean, automated parking garage. Access to parking will be made from 16th Street via a single driveway.
The center’s design according to documents from its architect, Michael W. Folonis Architects, contains “extensive green-building strategies.” Therefore, it is being registered for the Gold Level LEED Certification for New Construction and will be the first center of its kind in the United States to receive this certification. LEED (Leadership, in Energy & Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System is a voluntary standard that defines high performance green buildings.
One key sustainable strategy is the use of natural light throughout the center so the need for artificial light is minimized. Another strategy is the use of sun to heat the building’s lobby so no mechanical HVAC system is not needed. In addition, the north and south wing exterior elevations have windows for natural light and if possible, ventilation.
Approximately twenty-five percent of the center’s electricity will be provided by photovoltaic solar panels.
A key unique sustainable design feature is the center’s automated parking system which is one of the first of its kind on the West Coast. You drive in and take a ticket like a regular garage, but instead of driving down to different levels while looking for parking you pull in to one of six loading spaces. After you leave your car a shuttle then comes out and places your car in a stacked car vault. The process is reversed when you retrieve your car, and it only takes about 90 seconds to either park or retrieve your car. Systems like this are being used in New York and Korea. This parking system reduces the space needed for the parking garage, its energy consumption, its need for electrical lighting, and its need for ventilation and exhaust systems.
Lastly, the center’s landscape will include many native and drought tolerant grasses and trees as well as a sub-grade irrigation system. This system will be used to minimize evaporation losses and to get water directly to the vegetation’s roots. Also included will be a retention system that captures and utilizes storm water for on-site irrigation.
Folonis told the Mirror that the project’s price tag of $45 million “includes it s furnishings, medical equipment as well as its building costs.”
Santa Monica’s Planning Commission approved a Statement of Overriding Considerations and a Mitigation Monitoring Program for the center back in September of 2009. These documents were necessary because the project’s Environmental Impact Report (EIR) found there would be significant unavoidable impacts from the center on transportation/traffic, and during its construction on the surrounding neighborhood.
Mirror Contributing Writerhannah@smmirror.com