Palomar Medical Center


Palomar Medical Center, completed in August 2012, incorporates cutting-edge sustainable design to create a high-performance healing environment. Improving access to care and operational effectiveness through sustainable design were at the forefront of CO Architects’ design goals. The 740,000-square-foot, 11-story nursing tower contains 288 beds and incorporates various innovative architectural facets, aspiring to be the quintessential “hospital of the future.” The ecologically regenerative, 1.5-acre green roof and garden spaces featured on each level of the nursing tower are flush with drought-resistant vegetation, allowing for beautiful south-facing patient room views.

The architectural and medical planning design strove for and surpassed sustainable  goals by including a full complement of water conservation, energy-saving measures  and air quality improvements. 


Palomar Medical Center is one of just two hospitals in the United States that bring natural light into operating rooms. It was planned before the LEED® for Healthcare (LEED-HC) standard was approved and was designed to the Green Guide for Health Care standards, which has further developed into the now approved LEED-HC. The hospital was designed for simple adaptation of future space remodeling and technology needs over the next  few decades.

Creating a high-performance healing environment meant selecting known healthy building products. Construction Specialties (CS) products were chosen by CO Architects and integrated into the facility because of the products’ high material health standards and ingredient transparency, which ensured designers and healthcare officials that selected products had eliminated chemicals of concern. CS products included were entrance flooring, rigid sheet, crash rails, corner guards, handrails and architectural louvers. 

Project: Palomar Medical Center

Location: Escondido, CA

Architect: CO Architects

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As one of the country’s largest hospital construction projects and the first new North County hospital in 30 years, the 56-acre campus has already captured the attention of healthcare professionals worldwide for its use of nature, light and space — all designed  to speed healing.


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