Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children, Diamond Head Tower

Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children Waiting Room Second View

Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children, Diamond Head Tower

New Tower Advances Care for Women & Children

Diamond Head Tower, the second phase of the redevelopment of Kapi’olani Medical Center for Women & Children, boasts a new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. This new gateway is also home to outpatient, education and support functions. As Hawaii’s largest specialty hospital for women and children, the redevelopment of the landlocked 4.4 acre campus and the new Diamond Head Tower presents the KMCWC with a new scale and a new symbolic gravitas in its role protecting and nurturing new life.

The new design almost quintupled the size of Kapi’olani’s previous NICU, adding 24 beds to bring the total to 70 private rooms sized for families. The PICU has tripled in size to 26 private acuity adaptable rooms.

Key features of Diamond Head Tower include:

  • The design created a better segregation of patient type and patient flow, co-locating all inpatients together in the new tower, all outpatients on lower floors and all service and support functions on the lower level of the facility.
  • Adequately sized support and treatment spaces, on/off-stage concepts that segregate public and outpatient traffic from inpatient and support traffic, private NICU rooms and same-handed inpatient rooms highlight some of the major improvements.
  • Indigenous materials lend familiarity to those who use the facility. Symbols and imagery pay homage to the island’s people, customs and traditions. Rock, sea and the landscape are an integral part of the Hawaiian environment and serve as metaphors for birth, life and health.
  • The building exterior’s overall folded plate represents a seashell and the protective environment it provides for the living form inside — much as the hospital does for its patients.
  • An open “lei” built of simulated wood panels surrounds the front door. A dark-colored vertical slab represents volcanic lava stone, symbolizing the traditional feather staff of Hawaiian Royalty. It features the hospital’s guiding principle: “Strive for the highest.”
Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children Waiting Room Second View
Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children

Honolulu, HI
United States

260,000 sf (24,155 m²)
LEED for Healthcare v2009 Silver Certification


Honor Award (2018)
Engineering Excellence Awards
American Council of Engineering Companies of Nebraska