New Construction

Design Phase Approved for UK College of Medicine Construction

This week, the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees approved the design phase for the construction of a new building for the UK College of Medicine. According to a press release, the facility will include about 380,000 square feet of classrooms, conference rooms, simulation suites, office space, and support space. A location for the building on campus has yet to be determined and will be announced in late summer or early fall.

“Physician demand is expected to exceed supply exponentially over the next 10 years,” said UK College of Medicine Dean Robert DiPaola. “And we know the most effective way to increase the number of physicians practicing statewide is to train them. In Kentucky, it is especially dire as the medical needs across the state are among the highest in the nation, particularly in rural areas.”

The university’s medical students currently take classes in either the William R. Willard Medical Education Building, the Charles T. Wethington Building, and the Clinical Skills Training and Assessment Center. During the 2020–21 academic year, the UK College of Medicine had an enrollment of 717 students. The number of applicants for a set number of spots (201) increased from 2,394 in 2019 to 3,792 in 2020.

“Increasing the number of practicing physicians is one of the many ways in which the UK College of Medicine is responding to increased health care demands throughout the Commonwealth,” said DiPaola. “Training physicians and other health care professionals to practice statewide in Kentucky is of major importance, and to do that effectively, the College of Medicine and other health care colleges at UK need the space available to grow the number of students to meet the needs of the Commonwealth.”

Once the design phase of the project is complete, it will go back to the Board of Trustees for approval, and then the bidding and construction phases will begin.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].