Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

Conceived as three hospitals in one, this massive complex in the heart of Abu Dhabi by SOM combines a general hospital with medical centers for women and children. This shared-service model enhances patient care while improving efficiency. Once it is completed, the Sheikh Khalifa Medical City will be the largest hospital in the United Arab Emirates.
Courtesy of SOM

Courtesy of SOM

Envisioned as a ‘city within a city’, the design endeavors created a new paradigm for a medical center, one that is more like a bustling campus, with vibrant public spaces and a sense of community. Informed by historical regional precedents, the design seeks to strike a balance as a state-of-the-art vision rooted in local heritage. The design responds to, and is respectful of, the unique culture of the UAE and its demanding desert climate.
Courtesy of SOM

Courtesy of SOM

The primary architectural challenge of the project was to balance the client’s desire to create distinct identities for each of the three hospitals, while maintaining an overall unified expression for the medical city. This will be achieved by developing a series of unifying and differentiating components. The medical city’s heavy stone plinth – a reference to the ancient architecture of the region – serves as a common pedestrian-scaled expression, within which the most intense medical functions will be found along with shared amenity spaces and light-filled courtyards. The roof of the plinth is home to a network of gardens that also serve to unify the bed towers that rise above. The architecture of the bed towers communicates the identity of each hospital within a common vocabulary. The exterior sun screens, which characterize the bed tower facades, vary from simple rhythm of the general hospital to playful colors and patterns of the children’s hospital to the intricate mashrabiya-inspired geometries of the women’s hospital.
Courtesy of SOM

Courtesy of SOM

Aesthetically, the design seeks to strike a balance between the local heritage and the modernist vocabulary. Orthogonal in plan, the campus features a series of glass boxes anchored to a two-story, stone-clad plinth. Upper levels of the complex contains patient rooms, while the podium houses emergency rooms, operating theaters, the radiology department and outpatient clinics. Additionally, this base offers amenities such as cafes, shops and prayer rooms. 
Project Information :
Architect : SOM
Location : Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Project Year : Excepted to be 2018
Total Area : 279,000 square meters

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