ICRAVE Celebrates Opening of The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

ICRAVE led experience, interior and lighting design for public spaces in the 750,000 sq. ft. outpatient facility

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#21stcentury–Today, ICRAVE celebrates the opening of the David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). The 750,000 sq. ft., 25-floor outpatient facility in Manhattan will serve as a model for 21st-century cancer care, reinventing the experience in part through highly innovative design solutions. For 20 years, ICRAVE, the design firm created by Lionel Ohayon, has been a pioneer in healthcare, airport and hospitality design.

Located in Manhattan’s Upper East Side at East 74th Street between York Avenue and FDR Drive, The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering will open for state-of-the-art care in January 2020. It’s here that MSK and ICRAVE sought to evaluate how design and technology can improve the cancer care experience for patients, families and caregivers. ICRAVE led experience design which informed their designs for the interior and lighting of its public spaces.

Giving Patients More Freedom

The facility’s patient-oriented design and use of technology provides increased choice for those undergoing treatment. MSK’s personalized RTLS devices locate patients, caregivers and staff throughout the facility, enabling patients to move more freely, no longer tethered to their clinic, and providing optionality for where and how patients spend their time.

With patients having more mobility, ICRAVE designed waiting areas around the concept of neighborhoods geared to meet a variety of needs and interests, each comprised of three typologies: Restoration, Recreation and Activation.

  • Restoration spaces provide patients with quiet, private areas for meditation, reading, sketching and a place to find their perfect seat and enjoy rays of afternoon sunlight.
  • Recreation spaces are a balance of intimate and group spaces with areas for social activities such as arts and crafts, as well as nooks for personal activities such as reading and writing time. Center pavilions provide a footprint for group classes.
  • Activation spaces are bright, airy and vibrant spaces to encourage connection and participation. Transparency through open-faced pavilions showcases a range of programming, and encourages patients to engage in social activities and connect to the broader MSK community at large.

All of these spaces are designed to be flexible to the needs of the patient and allow for various programming opportunities.

Improving the Caregiver Experience

Imperative to solving for a patient-centric experience is addressing the needs of families and caregivers as this helps to relieve unnecessary stress on the patients. On the inpatient floor, the family zone was conceived as a hearth – a place for larger groups of friends and families to come together for visits, meals or special events. In-room improvements on the inpatient floor better accommodate caregivers’ needs with built-in workspaces, storage, and seating nooks for families to relocate during patient care. Throughout, custom-designed lighting and fixtures soften and warm akin to a hotel lobby. Thoughtful retail addresses both needs and wants of caregivers and patients.

Optimizing for Staff Needs

Design elements for the medical staff look to support the team, improve collaboration and give them the space needed to take care of personal needs. Better situated conference rooms and gathering spaces enable nurses and doctors to work as an integrated team, and more effectively serve a patient’s treatment plan. Other areas allow for life to happen, from a kitchen island for staff to gather around to multi-sized conference rooms for large gatherings to smaller zones for impromptu collaboration. Understanding that this is a 24-hour facility, lighting innovations like an automated circadian lighting system help nurses adjust from morning to evening, and an extension of the café aids late-night grab and go.

Designing a Welcoming Experience

ICRAVE saw the lobby as an opportunity to create an inviting environment for all, looking to instill pride in the staff, and a warm welcome and thoughtful sendoff for patients and caregivers. By incorporating a meaningful retail program and café experience, the lobby comes to life with increased foot traffic and linger time. The check-in experience was re-imagined with a compass desk acting as the central navigating point and facilitating one-on-one relationships between staff and guests. Utilizing the tenets of hospitality design, the lobby brings a mix of textured warm woods, which ground the space in a sense of calm. Private rooms are an empathetic touch for patients by offering seating and a place to gather oneself before reengaging with the world.

The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering marks the second time MSK and ICRAVE have come together to innovate patient experience through design – the first being at The Josie Robertson Surgery Center also in Manhattan, which opened in 2017.

Additional project team members for The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering include:

Perkins Eastman: Architect – Medical Planning, interior design

Ennead: Architect – Core & Shell


HLB: Lighting

Thornton Tomasetti: Structural

Cerami & Associates: AV


ICRAVE is a leading design firm based in New York City that solves business challenges through strategy and design. Driven by two decades’ experience, ICRAVE’s interdisciplinary approach emphasizes innovation, thought leadership and immersive experience. Clients select ICRAVE as their design partner when challenged with blending physical, digital and service in a single setting to increase their commercial benefit. For that reason, the firm’s expertise and client base is wide-ranging: airports and air travel, hospitality and entertainment, mixed-use residential, and more. Current projects include food halls like Mercado Little Spain and Starrett Lehigh, F&B schemes at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, Boston Logan International Airport and Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, and the David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering in Manhattan among others. For more information, visit www.icrave.com.


Leigh Cashman


error: Content is protected !!