University of New Mexico Cancer Center

Distinguished Building Award Submission

The University of New Mexico Cancer Center is a National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center and a major addition to the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Campus.

The project’s design concept creates a highly functional and technologically state-of-the-art facility to optimize efficient patient care and high staff performance. This concept evolved into the design of a five-level facility comprised of straightforward, flexible floors organizing specialty clinics, treatment modalities and team areas.

The design also creates an inviting and uplifting “health spa/hospitality-oriented” environment to encourage wellness and hope in an architectural language sensitive to New Mexico’s unique tri-cultural patient base. This design features unique outdoor space that connects patients and staff to the site’s high desert landscape. Level 5 is treated as “the penthouse” of the facility and is dedicated to chemotherapy patients. A continuous serpentine window wall provides soft north light and showcases spectacular views of the Sandia Mountains. An adjacent rooftop garden allows patients to enjoy the outdoors without interrupting treatment. The design and color palette echoes the earth and deserts of the Southwest and emphasize natural materials and abundant daylight. Importantly, the design incorporates cultural and artistic references that respond to the diversity of patients and their families.

Rhode May Keller McNamara Architecture, P.C. and VOA Associates Incorporated (VOA)
University of New Mexico
General contractor
Affiliated Engineers, Inc.
Albuquerque, New Mexico