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UC San Diego Sulpizio Family Cardiovascular Center Honored for Design Excellence


September 21, 2012  |  

The region’s only comprehensive cardiovascular facility receives 2012 Modern Healthcare Award

UC San Diego Sulpizio Family Cardiovascular Center has received Modern Healthcare’s highest design honor, the 2012 Modern Healthcare Design Award.  Out of more than one hundred entries, only one other project received this honor in 2012. 


UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center awarded for design by Modern Healthcare.

“We are honored to receive this prestigious recognition,” said Lisa Murphy, Associate Administrator for UC San Diego Health System, who shepherded the project from design to completion.  “UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center was a project built by an exceptional team of physicians, architects and construction workers with a shared vision for world class heart care.  It’s exhilarating to know that the physical manifestation of that vision resonated with leading national designers.”

These prestigious awards known to the world-wide architecture community recognize excellence in the design and planning of new and remodeled healthcare facilities by registered architects.  "Effective healthcare design serves the needs of patients, caregivers, communities and the environment," said David Burda, editor of Modern Healthcare. "How well the designs serve those four stakeholders is central to our annual Design Awards competition."

The 128,000-square-foot facility is the first dedicated cardiovascular center in the San Diego region. It is situated to maximize views of the La Jolla surroundings and to capture natural light into each department.  The state-of-the-art facility provides an integrated platform for research, teaching, and care-giving, all under one roof. 

“UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center is a unique project that truly captures the spirit of collaboration,” said Jacky Yung, AIA, LEED AP, principal at RTKL Associates, Inc.  “The success of delivering a world class facility that provides a new standard of healthcare, a sustainable building design leading to the LEED Gold certification, and now being awarded for design excellence are all due to the sophisticated planning and execution by the High Performance Team (HPT).  RTKL is so fortunate to be part of this journey, delivering the first cardiovascular center in the region serving this special community.”

“Building UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center represents an ongoing transformation of our La Jolla campus,” said David Brenner, MD, vice chancellor for UC San Diego Health Sciences and dean of UC San Diego School of Medicine.  “Along with Shiley Eye Center, Moores Cancer Center and Thornton Hospital, Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center sets the standard for care locally and globally.”

The LEED Gold-certified facility takes full advantage of the movement of the sun with shading devices and massing elements to minimize heat gain and reduce energy consumption.  The design also embraces the idea of blurring the lines between interior and exterior regions, to provide the facility with a “natural” feel that picks up on the stunning geography of the nearby coastal canyons.  The end product is a state-of-the-art facility with the latest technology promoting a collaborative approach to care in a high-tech, high-touch building design with a strong, independent identity that closely relates back to the existing hospital.

In February 2005, UC San Diego received a $10 million gift from Richard and Maria (Gaby) Sulpizio to help construct this state-of-the-art cardiovascular patient care and clinical research facility.  The $138 million project came in on budget and ahead of time.

For more information about the awards:; For more information about UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center:

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Media Contact: Kim Edwards, 619-543-6163,

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