Playing a critical role at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, the new Don Knabe Wellness Center, built from cast-in-place concrete, represents a place for new beginnings. General contractor McCarthy placed about 830 cubic yards of concrete between footings/foundations, slab on grade, slab on metal deck, pool pit/walls, and curbs/pads.

As a self-performing general contractor, McCarthy saved time and money. For quality control, the team used advanced laser scanning technology to accurately analyze concrete levels, address specific pain points, and minimize the risk of change orders.

The integrated team of McCarthy, Taylor Design, and SmithGroupJJR collaborated to create Rancho Los Amigos’ new wellness center with state-of-the-art design and construction in under one year. The team successfully engaged these agencies as partners in the design process, which greatly benefited all aspects of construction.

Textured concrete panels reference the original cast-in-place therapy buildings and the administration building. An undulating perforated metal scrim drapes the buildings and ties the new facility together. This henna-colored ribbon references terracotta roof tiles with graphic patterning evoking memories of orange groves. For the central plaza, the design team drew from the elliptical quadrangles or plazas of classical campuses and cities, creating a series of soft looping paths and interconnected gardens that weave through the facility. Structures provide a backdrop to the central plaza, providing an ideal setting for a variety of therapeutic activities and community events.

The project team took every opportunity to interact, learn, and collaborate with users, staff, and administration on campus. The $12 million project was completed on Aug. 31, 2016.