Flad Architects

Making Connections

Medical College of Wisconsin

Hub for Collaborative Medicine

Working to improve and expand the patient care experience on the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center campus, Medical College of Wisconsin has embarked on a professional office building project that will relocate physicians, nurse practitioners, researchers and healthcare staff from Froedtert Hospital into one dedicated central workplace. A major impetus for the project was the need to free up clinical space within the hospital, but an equal need was to create opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration.

That was among the stated goals of key leaders gathered by Flad for an early kickoff meeting at which Flad's planners and designers met one-on-one with the college's president and CEO, the dean of the school of medicine and executive vice president, physician practice leaders, the chair of the department of medicine, the founding dean of the school of pharmacy, and others, who shared issues that they felt were vital to the future of MCW.

Flad then facilitated a summit session with the steering committee and practice leaders, the purpose of which was to build on Flad's synthesis of core themes, establishing guiding principles that the firm and the institution would use as a framework for decision-making during the planning process. Rounds of meetings refined the list of themes and helped planners prioritize and to better understand how the various groups work, and later, to allocate space in a way that responded to how they work. This ongoing communication was instrumental in bringing management of the 38 different groups that will inhabit the new building into alignment on a shared vision for the project.

When it opens in late 2017, the building will be an embodiment of those shared goals — among them, demonstrating the institution's vitality; activating innovation and connections; physically and figuratively bridging academic, clinical and research enterprises; and repositioning MCW's identity as a health sciences university.

Medical College of Wisconsin >Hub for Collaborative Medicine

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Following the guiding principles outlined by the institution's leadership, we designed the new building to leverage common spaces both within the building and between the new building and existing facilities to foster connections between groups. The opportunity to create synergies between groups will enable a new way of thinking and working that will help MCW realize its goal of enhanced interdisciplinary collaboration that ultimately drives discovery.

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