Pushing MEP Boundaries for New UCSF Parnassus Heights Hospital


Mazzetti and Arup Team to push MEP Boundaries for New Parnassus Heights Hospital

University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) has selected San Francisco-based, healthcare specialists Mazzetti and global consulting and engineering firm Arup as the lead MEP engineers of record for its new hospital, UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights (Parnassus Heights).  Collaborating with architect partners HDR (Architect of Record) and Herzog & de Meuron (Lead Designer) to design the “hospital for the future”, Mazzetti and Arup will integrate forward-looking, innovative design, supporting UCSF’s commitment to world-renowned clinical research and training.


While both firms are nationally recognized for healthcare engineering and consulting, both bring extensive California-specific expertise having designed 30 million square feet of OSHPD projects (over $20B in construction costs) over the past thirty years. Recent, similar projects include the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford (Mazzetti), the first LEED Platinum Children’s Hospital on the West Coast, the New Stanford Hospital (Mazzetti), UCSF Mission Bay (Arup) and Santa Clara Bed Building (Arup). Arup will also be providing additional services for the project, including civil engineering services and acoustics/vibration and logistics consulting. Gleaning from the recent innovative design and delivery methods, Mazzetti and Arup are uniquely poised to help create the “hospital for the future”.

Mazzetti’s Regional Healthcare Leader Jon Inman stated:

“As healthcare delivery evolves, so do the adaptability demands on our hospitals and infrastructure. With our combined experience in delivering the most advanced healthcare facilities, we are honored and excited to take on this challenge of engineering the next generation hospital at Parnassus Heights.”


The hospital will be designed to integrate with the natural setting of the surrounding Mount Sutro Open Space Reserve, focusing on the total patient experience to promote healing, wellness, and recovery. The boundaries of nature and urbanity will blur.

“Our unique knowledge of the priorities of the campus stakeholders will allow our team to blend the existing campus utility systems with new needs, providing renewed life to an aging campus. In turn, this will create value for the operation of the campus for decades to come,” said Raj Daswani, Arup’s Northern California Healthcare Leader.

As part of the Parnassus Heights campus, the new hospital will strengthen UCSF’s world-renowned clinical, research and training mission. That integration has produced decades of breakthroughs in health science research that have been translated into treatments and therapies delivered to patients here and around the world.


The plans for the hospital call for designing an architecturally outstanding, energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable facility that will accommodate the advanced technologies UCSF Health uses in clinical and surgical settings, including robotics and intra-operative imaging, as well as the space needed for a modern emergency department.  Aligned with delivering a “hospital for the future,” Mazzetti and Arup have commenced visioning what is possible for the MEP systems.

“We aren’t looking at technologies and systems that are leading edge now, but what will be cutting edge during the construction phase years from now to improve the efficiency and resiliency of the building and campus.  We are determining what codes need to change now to get these advances in technology incorporated into our building and working to push these boundaries.  As we drive through the concept phase into design, already in our “Big Zoom” meetings we are realizing great collaboration and consideration of the building design as a whole through the entire owner, end user, contractor, and design team,” says Chris Hanzel, Mazzetti Mechanical Project Manager

The new hospital will serve the increasing demand for complex adult medical care. Recently, the adjoined hospitals of Parnassus Heights, Moffitt and Long, have had to turn away nearly 3,000 patients annually for specialty care, due to a lack of bed capacity. Much of this demand comes from referrals to UCSF from other health care providers and community hospitals for care in areas ranging from cancer to cardiology to neurology.

With the trajectory indicating further increase, the new hospital will replace the inpatient care currently provided at Moffitt hospital, enabling the Parnassus Heights hospital to increase overall patient capacity by 42 percent, from 475 beds in 2020 to 675 beds.

Expected to open in 2030, the hospital will enable UCSF Health, one of the premier health systems in the nation, to serve the growing health care needs of patients in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond for decades to come.

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