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Projects • Texas Children’s Hospital Pavilion for Women

Texas Children’s Hospital Pavilion for Women

Houston, Texas

Texas Children’s Hospital (TCH) consistently ranks among the Best Children’s Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for many of their specialties. Looking to expand on this high standard of care, TCH broke ground on a new Pavilion for Women in 2008. The Pavilion for Women provides women, mothers, and babies with the full continuum of high-quality, expert maternity and neonatal care that patients have grown to expect from TCH.

The project included the design and construction of two towers built on a single base. The larger tower, the Pavilion for Women, is 15-stories and includes a full range of obstetrics services for high-risk pregnancies, including evaluation and consultation, pre term birth evaluation and prevention, access to specialists, sub-specialists and surgeons, intensive care services, and prenatal diagnostic and treatment services and support, including parenting classes, lactation support, and social services. The second tower is a 6-story building that includes an IVF clinic, radiology services, dining and kitchen area, and administrative space. Both towers were designed and constructed for anticipated future vertical expansions. The base sits on a 4-story, below ground parking garage.

During design, SSR anticipated the care needs of future patients, and extra steps were taken to ensure that the facility supported those needs. Sensitive to the needs of the Reproductive Endocrinology and Fertility department, their area was designed with LED lighting so not to damage embryos. Other special materials were incorporated in the area’s HVAC systems to clean the air to a higher level than required in the rest of the hospital.

The Pavilion for Women includes a Services Response Center (SRC), designed to function as a control center during times of emergency, which includes facility and security systems to monitor all building activities. The SRC includes the associated MEP systems to allow this to function during power outages.

A unique diesel fuel storage system was designed in the garage to keep the facility powered during times of disaster, and generators are stored on the 6th floor to avoid flood damage.

The Pavilion for Women is located on the TCH campus, in the heart of the Texas Medical Center, the world’s largest medical complex, home to 21 hospitals. Prior to construction, the project team had to carefully coordinate and execute demolition and clearing of existing buildings, without interruption to neighboring facilities. Once the site was cleared and construction began, the team encountered flooding issues in the below ground garage. Since the garage is almost at sea level, the needed a constant de-watering system designed that includes multiple small wells and 100+ dewatering pumps. Because of the flooding, the entire facility is powered from the first floor, above the flood level, designed to keep the building functional in the event of flood.

The connection of the Pavilion for Women to TCH’s main campus required careful coordination. The Pavilion is separated from campus a road and light rail track. Two bridges were required to span the lines and join the facilities. The two structures built in pieces and put into place overnight by crane, leaving minimal space to accommodate mechanical and electrical systems in the bridge.

Since it’s opening in 2012, TCH has engaged SSR in the planning and design of an expansion to both towers to meet the needs of their patients.


  • Texas Children’s Hospital

Project Completion

  • 2012


Project Size

  • 800,000 SF