We’re happy to announce that the Cancer Center, Rio de Janeiro has received a Merit Award for Excellence in Unbuilt Architecture from the AIA Central States Region. The award was given as part of the annual AIA Central States Design Excellence Awards, which recognizes exemplary projects coming from the states of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

national cancer center - rio

Located in Rio de Janeiro, the proposed cancer center is a dynamic mixed-use project balancing both business and social missions.

The project was initially envisioned as a private hospital serving patients capable of affording high-quality healthcare. However, a preliminary feasibility study revealed the price of the land was prohibitively high, which led the client to consider completely abandoning the project. Our team proposed an alternative project model that would leverage a public-private partnership to make the cancer center a reality. The new concept expanded the scope of the project to become a space jointly owned by the socially-minded city government and private investors. It would include a cancer hospital, public parking, housing for low income families, and other amenities, including shops, gardens and recreation spaces. The space would also offer an adult education and learning center where hospital staff could be trained.

The cost of land and limited availability of suitable sites in the city demanded a dense, vertically organized complex. The building weaves living quarters and public amenities throughout in a way that never interferes with hospital operations. The center resembles the culture and character of Rio de Janeiro, in which the favelas perched on the hills overlook the city skyscrapers beneath.