The Need

To access the Initial Study, please click the "Community Process" tab.

Strong Academic Medicine

What distinguishes UCSF at Parnassus Heights is the connection between a leading academic medical center with world-renowned research that provides a fertile training ground for clinicians and scientists. Our academic-backed care in neurosurgery, neurology, cardiac surgery, vascular surgery, diabetes, cancer and nephrology is considered among the best in the country.

For 21 years, UCSF Medical Center has been ranked among the top 10 hospitals nationwide — and the best in Northern California — by U.S. News & World Report. Most recently, UCSF ranked seventh on the national Best Hospitals Honor Roll and among the nation’s leading medical centers in all 15 specialty care areas assessed.

State-of-the-Art Facilities for State-of-the-Art Care

The science of health care has advanced dramatically over the decades, and today’s cutting-edge research and care delivery require specialized facilities. The researchers, care providers, faculty and learners at UCSF Parnassus Heights have made numerous innovative contributions to medicine over the years, but the limitations of our current infrastructure threaten to limit progress.

Many of the campus’ buildings have outlived their usefulness. UCSF Moffitt Hospital was constructed in 1955 and needs to be decommissioned for inpatient care or seismically retrofitted by 2030 to meet California’s seismic standards. In its place, a new state-of-the-art hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights will open in 2030 with physical spaces optimized to deliver 21st-century health care for future patients.

Keeping Pace with the Needs of Patients

In 1976, the University of California Board of Regents implemented a square footage limit for future development on the Parnassus Heights campus. Since that time, the increasing need for hospital capacity to meet the complex care needs of San Francisco and the Bay Area, together with research space co-located with UCSF’s adult care hospital, have exceeded the limitations that were set almost half a century ago.

Nearly 3,000 patients this year will be turned away from the hospital at Parnassus Heights because our current facility is often at capacity — a challenge that will likely increase with the Bay Area’s projected growing and aging population. On a daily basis, space issues require more than five patients, on average, to spend the night in the Emergency Department while they wait for a hospital bed. And about four times a week, the hospital goes on “high capacity alert” because there are too many patients in the Emergency Department, not enough critical care beds, or not enough acute care beds.

A doctor consults with a patient in a hospital room

Nina Shah, MD, hematologist, meets with patient Wallace George at the Hematology and Blood Marrow and Transplant Clinic at UCSF’s Parnassus Heights campus. 

In order to fulfill our public mission as the only health-focused academic medical center and campus within the University of California system, we will ask the UC Regents for permission to build beyond the square footage limitation set in 1976 while staying within our current physical footprint.


A Hospital for the Future

The new hospital will be architecturally outstanding, energy-efficient, seismically sound and environmentally sustainable. To help make this vision a reality, UCSF has selected Herzog & de Meuron as the lead designer and HDR as the architect of record. 

The facility will offer:

Integrated Technology

Advanced integrated technologies that create opportunities for personalized services—wayfinding, entertainment, information—and allow patients to take control of their own health and wellness. 

Natural Beauty

Panoramic views, sunlight, and natural surroundings, and a supportive workplace with optimal resources for clinicians and staff in surroundings that promote their physical and emotional health.

Holistic Care

A holistic healing experience that begins before check-in and extends throughout the stay, discharge sequence, and continued recovery. It will be a place that transforms patients, their families, and support systems into active participants in their healing process.

Privacy and Community

Rooms designed for privacy and infection control, and calming communal spaces that foster stronger, supportive relationships between providers, patients and families.

Increased Capacity to Meet Demand

The new hospital will help us serve the needs of patients – from the Bay Area and beyond.

a pair of rulers

834,000 Square Feet

A medical cross symbol with a heart rhythm inside of it

144 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Beds

A hospital bed with a medical cross above it

192 Acute Care Beds

Building with a medical cross symbol on it

58 Emergency Department Bays

Chairs in a waiting room with signage above it

10 Clinical Decision Unit Bays

An ambulance with its siren on

4-6 Ambulance Bays

Operation table with operating lights overhead

40 Total Operating Rooms

Diagnostic tools with a magnifying glass and a checkmark

16 Interventional Radiology Labs

An icon of a hospital bed on wheels

682 Total Beds


Whenever San Francisco Needs Us

The new hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights will enable us to serve the growing health care needs of San Francisco and beyond for decades to come. Here are some of its many features:

Bench to Bedside

The new hospital creates a physical space to realize “bench to bedside”— the process of translating laboratory discovery into patient care, a concept that distinguishes UCSF by having clinical and research care side-by-side at the same campus location.

Collaborative Research

Link clinical researchers and scientists who are pioneering important fields, such as immunotherapy and stem cells, to accelerate discoveries into treatments for conditions ranging from diabetes to neurological diseases to organ failure.

Emergency and Specialty Care

Maintain and expand patient access to specialty and emergency care on the city's west side.

Demand for UCSF Care

Accommodate increasing demand for UCSF’s complex health services due to a growing and aging population, new treatment opportunities and a focus on higher acuity cases.

Top-Tier Education

Create a training ground to teach the next generation of clinicians and scientists in a patient-centered environment that promotes compassion and respect, incorporating the latest technologies and methods, while upholding the highest standards of patient safety. 

Competitive Excellence

Entice the best clinicians and scientists, as well as staff, students and trainees.

Seismic Safety

Comply with state seismic regulations for acute care hospitals with the new hospital expected to open its doors to patients by 2030.

Welcoming Environment

Create an environment that welcomes community members and serves as a place where neighbors will come to enjoy programs and services, such as concerts, fitness facilities, eateries and “science on display.”

Project Details

A 10-Year Project

The new hospital is a long-term project that is expected to be completed by 2030. 


Visioning of the new hospital with community and user group input.


Master planning and programming with community and user group input.


Design phase of new hospital with community and user group input.


Demolition of the Langley Porter Psychiatric Hospital and Clinics.


Construction of the new hospital.


Testing, pre-occupancy, planning and fit-up of the new hospital with user group input.


Grand opening of the new hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights.


Executing the Vision

Creating a hospital for the future requires strong partners. HDR, the Architect of Record, and Herzog & de Meuron, Lead Designer, will be working with UCSF throughout the process. The following designers and builders, many of which are based locally, will complete the next phase of work:

Electrical Trade Contractor


General Contractor

Herrero Boldt Webcor

Landscape Architect

James Corner Field Operations

Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing Engineers of Record

Mazzetti and Arup

Mechanical and Plumbing Trade


Structural Engineers of Record

Nabih Youssef & Associates (New Hospital)
Degenkolb (Moffitt and Long Hospitals)


Community Process

UCSF is hosting a series of meetings to discuss the design proposals for the new hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights. This is an opportunity to meet directly with the architects and engage with this exciting project.

Design topics to be addressed include, but are not limited to: 

  • Exterior Building Design
  • Materials Used
  • Site Access and Pedestrian/Vehicular circulation
  • Landscape and Open Space Connection
  • Public Spaces

Meeting Information

New Hospital Design Community Meeting: Tuesday, September 21, 2021


Join UCSF for a community design meeting regarding the new hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights

On Tuesday, September 21, UCSF will provide an update on design concepts of the new hospital at the UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights.

The UCSF team has been working to integrate community feedback into the design of a state-of-the-art hospital that meets the needs of 21st century patient care. At the September 21 meeting, UCSF will focus on design aspects that relate to transportation and circulation, which includes:

  • Vehicular flow
  • Pedestrian Safety 
  • Approach to Construction

Over 160 people attended the July meeting, sharing important perspectives for the new hospital project team. We invite the community to join us as we continue the iterative design process and build a hospital that best serves the community. 

This meeting will be held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

See past meeting presentations and videos 



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