Crile Clinic Building

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Cleveland, Ohio, USA
620,000 square feet / 58,000 square meters
1984

The signature building of the Cleveland Clinic, the Crile Building houses the outpatient services department. Within these 14 stories are doctors’ offices for nearly every medical specialty. Some same-day surgeries, rehabilitation, and other services also take place in the building. The Crile Building is the first building completed under the Cleveland Clinic Green campus master plan, which Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects also designed.

A soaring, light-filled lobby with wood and stone details welcomes visitors. Waiting areas offer views west to the campus Green and downtown Cleveland through broad floor-to-ceiling windows. In addition to the lobby, the first two floors are designated for dining facilities, laboratories, offices, patient education and radiology. Examination rooms, doctors’ offices and dictation cubicles wrap around the perimeter for access to natural light.

The building is composed of 21 two-story clinics ranging in size from 418 to 5,100 square meters (4,500 to 55,000 square feet) The clinics are grouped by function and united by a two-story atrium for each group that echoes the design of the main floor lobby. Interior spaces offer clear orientation and easy flow of pedestrian traffic.

Work spaces not requiring daylight — laboratories, classrooms, dressing rooms — are positioned in the center of each floor. Mechanical equipment, medical records and archives are stored in two basement levels. The top floor is a mechanical penthouse.

The building’s façade is a formal composition of glass and granite horizontal bands, with concentrations of glass at the central public spaces. The west façade contains multiple setbacks which create a dramatic silhouette and give a sense of supportive depth to the building’s rear.

The one hectare (two-acre) Green is a central open space and unifying core around which future buildings can be developed. The south and east sides of the Green adjoin two legs of an enclosed T-shaped pedestrian bridge that links the Crile Building, hotel and old and new hospital wings.

The bridge also connects the buildings with a 1,500-car garage that includes a glass stairway tower. The pedestrian bridge is a social space as well as a circulation element.

In 1986, the Crile Building received an Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects.