As part of its master plan to reimagine its entire campus over the next decade, Rady's Children’s Hospital-San Diego broke ground today on the largest construction project in its nearly 70-year history: a seven-story, 500,000 square foot Intensive Care Unit and Emergency Services Pavilion, which is set to open in 2027.

The pavilion will house a brand-new emergency department and cutting-edge pediatric, neonatal, and cardiac intensive care units, alongside modern operating rooms. What sets this facility apart, as highlighted by Rady's statement, is its commitment to providing a “welcoming and child-friendly environment. 

“Having a child in the hospital is a stressful time for families,” said Nicholas Holmes, MD, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Rady Children’s. “From the beginning of this project, we knew how important it would be to provide families and children with comfortable and soothing spaces that didn’t feel like a traditional hospital setting.”

The pavilion will feature spacious single-patient rooms, thoughtfully designed to accommodate caregivers, ensuring comfort and convenience for both patients and their families.

“This is a generational transformation,” said Patrick Frias, MD, President & CEO of Rady Children’s. “We not only need to be sized and scaled appropriately to serve our community today, we need to be built for the future to meet the complex needs of families in the decades ahead.”

Moreover, the Pavillion is designed with flexibility in mind, capable of adapting to various purposes as healthcare models evolve over the years. Rady Children's Hospital's upcoming Intensive Care Unit and Emergency Services Pavilion represents a significant leap forward in pediatric healthcare, promising top-notch care and a nurturing environment for young patients.


“The Rady family’s unparalleled investment in the health of children has translated into unprecedented advancements in care for young patients,” said Stephen Jennings, Senior Vice President and Chief External Affairs Officer at Rady Children’s. “As we begin construction, we know that the Rady family’s legacy will continue to improve the lives of children, families and communities for generations to come.”

Part of an existing structure built in the 1950s will be demolished to make way for the new Pavilion. 

The seven levels of the structure will each serve a different function:

  • Level 1: Café and Kitchen
  • Level 2: Radiology
  • Level 3: Emergency Department
  • Level 4: CTICU (Cardiothoracic intensive care unit)
  • Level 5: NICU (Neonatal intensive care unit)
  • Level 6: PICU (Pediatric intensive care unit)
  • Level 7: Shell space for future needs
  • Helipad on the roof

“Rady Children’s is a familiar and comforting presence for families in our region, and increasingly, an influential force in pediatric medicine in our country,” said Paul Hering, Chair of the Rady Children’s Hospital Board of Trustees. “Our hope is that this new tower will stand as an enduring testament to our community’s commitment to children’s health, and to ever-brighter tomorrows.”