BUFFALO, N.Y. — Construction of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo (UB) is on schedule for a 2017 opening after reaching a major milestone — the signing and raising of one of the structure’s final steel beams — in March.
Designed by the New York offices of HOK, the approximately 628,000-square-foot facility will comprise two, L-shaped structures to enhance connectivity for the interdisciplinary campus. The university’s children’s hospital, medical offices, medical school, clinical and translational research center, Gates Vascular Institute, Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the existing Buffalo-Niagara campus will operate in the central building. Public transportation access will also be included, with the Allen Street transit hub planned for the building’s ground floor.
The new building will allow UB to expand its medical school class size from 144 to 180 students and add 100 new physician-scientists to the UB faculty. In its new downtown location, the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences will allow for collaboration between physicians and scientists at the school and those at the UB Clinical and Translational Research Center, the Kaleida Health Gates Vascular Institute, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital, Buffalo General Medical Center and the Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute.
The downtown facility is expected to generate immediate and long-term economic benefits for Buffalo, according to the school’s website. Not only will it provide construction jobs for hundreds and exceed state goals for minority-and women-owned business participation, but it will also draw an estimated 2,000 faculty, staff and students to downtown Buffalo daily. During the first phase of the project it was estimated that 24.7 percent of businesses involved were minority- and/or women-owned businesses, while minority- and/or women-owned businesses represented 20.2 percent of firms involved in the project’s second phase. Additionally, the influx of students, faculty and staff to the downtown area will increase population density in downtown, enhancing opportunities for retail and housing development, incubators, research parks and other economic development opportunities.
The construction of the new medical school building, which is seeking LEED Gold certification, is part of a greater vision to create a state-of-the-art downtown medical campus by 2020.