Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning

The Hospital for Sick Children
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

The Hospital for Sick Children's (SickKids) Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning is believed to be the largest health center in the world devoted to children's health research. Within the 21-story tower, more than 2,000 scientists and staff—previously scattered in six different locations—are conducting state-of-the-art research in genomics, cancer research, stem cell research, brain behavior research and organ research.

The entire building was designed to enhance collaboration and encourage scientists, clinicians and students to fuel innovation. The17 floors of laboratory space are grouped into six specialized neighborhoods each spanning two to three floors—Brain & Behavior, Organ Systems & Disease, Patients Population & Policy, Genetic & Genomic Medicine, Cancer & Stem Cell Biology and finally Molecules Cells & Therapies. Each of these neighborhoods has its own expansive atrium and is connected to the other neighborhoods through staircases and shared spaces. These shared "water cooler" spaces include kitchenettes, white boards, and comfortable furniture to encourage gathering and the incubation of new solutions to treating childhood diseases.

All of the laboratories, which make up approximately 70% of the entire building, are designed with ultimate flexibility, including movable benches— six-feet long in trains of three—that can be easily moved, connected and disconnected from utilities in the ceiling. These open, easily-reconfigured labs are clustered around core facilities including an applied genomics lab, imaging center and vivaria. To put the scale of the laboratories into perspective, it has been calculated that the building houses more than three miles of laboratory bench top.

The tower is designed to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Designed in association with Diamond Schmitt Architects

  • Sustainable Features: LEED Gold
  • Type of Construction: New Construction
  • Professional Services: Architecture, Interior Design, Laboratory Design, Planning
  • Project Components: Amenity Spaces, Atrium, Auditorium, Collaborative Space, Community Space, Conference Room, Educational Space, Genomics Laboratory, Imaging, Laboratory, Offices, Teaching Laboratory
  • Project Type: Translational Health Science
  • Related Projects: Architecture, Healthcare, Translational Health Sciences
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