Case Study

Centro de Cancer ABC (American British Cowdray Cancer Center) Bringing Doctors and Treatment Services Together for Comprehensive Cancer Care

Mexico City, Mexico

The Challenge

Organize multiple oncology services and specialists in a building that creates a calm and confident treatment environment for patients fighting a fearsome disease.

The Design Solution

HKS designers conceived of a building that conveys strength externally, while feeling light, transparent and warm within. Vision glass enhances and frames views, while spandrel, sandblasted glass blocks filter natural light. A four-story glazed atrium creates a recognizable main entry for the project on an oddly shaped in-fill site hemmed in by residential buildings, warehouses and a disorderly street layout. Concave glass traces a roundabout that leads visitors and patients under the drop-off canopy. Patients and visitors enter a four-story atrium filled with natural light and vivid color in the form of warm wood, terrazzo flooring, wood ceilings, earth-toned walls and local artwork. Clinical areas also feature an expansive aquarium, abundant indoor plant life and quiet private alcoves.

The Design Impact

Cancer fighting services and caregivers are consolidated in a facility that is at once strong and patient-focused. HKS designers created a way for the project to perpetually give back to the community by preserving part of the project site for a neighborhood park.

Project Features

  • 65,000 square feet (6,038 sm)
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Surgical services
  • Diagnostics
  • Patient education
  • Healing garden
  • Neighborhood park


  • 2010 Healthcare Design Magazine’s International Architecture Showcase, Citation of Merit