Toronto Medical Discovery Tower at MaRS
University Health Network
NXL worked with UHN on the fit-out of this 15-storey research facility located in the MaRS Discovery District. UHN occupies 9 stories while the Hospital for Sick Children occupy 5 stories for their research in developmental biology and genetics. The overall program included the fit-out of research labs and associated areas, administration areas, common spaces, and amenities throughout the building. Unique programs in this space include two 800 mhz NMRs, fow cytometry labs, an animal resource centre, a high-dose radiation suite with MicroPET Scanner, CT Scanner, Image Guided Radiotherapy machine, NanoSpecT, a bioengineering clean room suite accommodating class 1000 space for electronic assembly, and large microarray robotics.
The design for the facility had to work within the existing floorplate, designed by the base building architect. The design included generic open lab modules to accommodate 3 to 4 PI’s with their associated research teams. Each module had access to support spaces such as tissue culture rooms, equipment bays, microscopy, dark rooms, and storage and supplies areas. These support areas were used to segregate the open lab modules, and create positive or negative airflow between spaces. Within the labs, NXL focused on a flexible benching concept and its relationship to power and utility distribution.
The design of administrative and write up spaces maximized access to natural light for all the personnel and incorporated interaction spaces at circulation nodes. A mix of external and interior offices creates bays of open office write up space that all share access to views. Glazed walls permit views into the laboratories and offices from the common corridors, making important visual connections.