Topping out, together, at UC San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest

One of the first elements of a complete revitalization of a major healthcare campus in San Diego topped out June 23 at a ceremony honoring craft workers and what they’ve accomplished to date.

Two  workers signing a beam.
The team, whose focus is a "one team" approach, came together to celebrate all that they have accomplished on this project. Photo: Matt Pranzo

The UC San Diego Health Hillcrest Outpatient Pavilion, part of the first phase of the UC San Diego Long Range Development Plan, will be a six-story, 250,000-sq.-ft. advanced medical facility housing key clinical programs, addressing the region's growing demand for specialized diagnostic, treatment and surgical services, notably in cancer care.

The first phase of construction also includes a new parking structure to provide approximately 1,850 spaces for employees, patients and visitors, plus related road and utility infrastructure.

“The new outpatient pavilion will reflect the world-class care UC San Diego Health provides to the community on a daily basis. It’s so exciting to have achieved this topping out construction milestone,” said Lisa Rhodes, chief administrative officer for the Hillcrest redevelopment plan at UC San Diego Health. “We will transform lives in the new outpatient pavilion — ranging from regular checkups for orthopedic care, to infusion therapy for cancer treatment. Our multi-disciplinary teams will provide support services and the highest quality of care for San Diegans during their most vulnerable moments and throughout their health care journeys.”

250,000 sq. ft.

Phase 1 will house 250,000 sq. ft. of key clinical programs, notably in cancer care.


A new parking structure will provide approximately 1,850 spaces, plus related road and utility infrastructure.


The project is anticipated to be complete in 2025.

The project team has focused on a “one team” approach throughout the project, working with a shared mission to navigate challenges together, pointed toward success for all.

“Everyone on our site knows that what we’re building is going to affect the lives of people in the community,” said Ian Pyka, a DPR project executive. “In some cases, that’s people they know, but it could be our own families who come here for care. Everyone sees how what they do for the project plays a role in creating a place for care that will make a difference.”

Beam flying over job site.
The final beam was placed at the new UC San Diego Health Hillcrest Outpatient Pavilion in June of 2023. Photo: Matt Pranzo

The project is taking place on a complex site. In addition to needing to plan around an active hospital campus the emergency department driveway is adjacent to the project site, for instance the project is also in the middle of a residential neighborhood with many one-way streets, meaning logistical planning for deliveries and even staff arrival has been important. The site itself occupies a ravine that had a 75-ft. elevation change from one end to the other before work began.

“We’re working on an active campus and the team has spent a lot of time at the planning table to make sure everything moves smoothly and safely,” Pyka said. “Having all the right people at the table at the right time has been instrumental to success to date.”

The project is anticipated to be complete in 2025.

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