Education National/International

Shepley Bulfinch Designs HBSB2


The Shepley Bulfinch-designed HBSB2 viewed from Wheeler Ave/courtesy Shepley Bulfinch

The Shepley Bulfinch-designed HBSB2 viewed from Wheeler Ave. / courtesy Shepley Bulfinch

Boston – Shepley Bulfinch recently provided programming, planning, and designing services for the University of Houston’s Health and Biomedical Sciences Building 2, the second phase of the development designed by Shepley Bulfinch.

A full-scale cardboard mock-up was created for key rooms, and UH staff members were invited to participate in a working session in order to reach consensus on room layout and size.

The new nine-story, 300,000sf facility is scheduled for completion in late 2017.


HBSB2 will provide a new home for the College of Pharmacy and three floors of expanded research space for the Division of Research. These consolidated lab facilities will promote critical workforce training in the pharmaceutical and biomedical sectors while its flexible lab spaces will support transitional research and collaboration among pharmacological research groups. The new facility will feature specialized research and teaching labs, faculty offices, an expanded library and a mix of teaching spaces. The lower two floors consolidate previously scattered clinical and teaching programs into a welcoming multidisciplinary environment for the treatment of chronic conditions.

“This new home for our College of Pharmacy will allow our faculty to educate and train the next generation of patient care providers,” said College of Pharmacy Dean F. Lamar Pritchard. “In turn, these cutting-edge facilities will ensure our college maintains its legacy of excellence.”

Another important component of HBSB2 will be an integrated health care clinic to serve University of Houston faculty, students, staff and the surrounding community. The clinic will be made possible by partnering with a federally qualified health center (FQHC) that will have primary care, OB-GYN, family practice and pediatric physicians.

“This new facility will provide state-of-the art infrastructure and will allow us to increase faculty and student enrollment, faculty hiring and research funding. We’ll see enormous results from the construction and opening of this new facility,” said University of Houston Provost Paula Short, PhD. “It supports President Khator’s Tier One vision and the University’s efforts to be relevant in our community and regionally and nationally competitive.”

The two buildings, HBSB1 and HBSB2, are interconnected on five levels. The first three are for students and staff while the upper two are for researchers only. This interconnection facilitates circulation and connects like-minded programs in the two buildings: student with student; research with research; and clinic with clinic. A very tight site with access to loading and utility bays located right in the center of that site presented a unique challenge for the design team. Slanted concrete columns and careful coordination of fire separations and all utilities allows the connections between buildings to flow unimpeded.

“The success of HBSB1 and its seamless delivery from programming and design through completion has been recognized by our Facilities Planning and Construction group, the Administration and the building’s users,” said David Oliver, Associate Vice Chancellor and Associate Vice President for Facilities/Construction Management at the University of Houston. “By leading a collaborative design process, the Shepley Bulfinch team met requirements for an aggressive schedule and construction budget, and delivered the first iconic building for our emerging Health Sciences Center. We look forward to working with the Shepley Bulfinch team to deliver another successful project.”

Project team members include: construction management: Tellepsen Builders; laboratory design: Research Facilities Design (RFD); structural engineer: Structures + Haynes Whaley; mechanical, electrical and plumbing (M/E/P) Engineer: E&C Engineers & Consultants, Inc.; civil engineer: Kuo & Associates; and landscape architect: Asakura Robinson Company, LLC.


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