• The Commonwealth Medical College, Scranton, PA / HOK / Paul Warchol Photography

The Commonwealth Medical College




Silver (anticipated)


Quandel Construction


Paul Warchol Photography


Paul Warchol Photography


Scranton, PA


ClearShade CS-TTW10-1000-1020

TrueWhite™ ClearShade Insert/ OB Lite: 6mm Clear Tempered / IB Lite: 6mm Clear Tempered, SG500 #3

Scranton is subject to a lot of cloudy sky conditions, and we wanted to maximize daylighting potential. The city grid is rotated 45 degrees from north, meaning high-gain facades facing southwest are challenging from a light control and [solar heat] gain perspective. Clearshade achieved multiple objectives; from the interior it is effective at scattering light high in the laboratories and academic areas while minimizing [solar heat] gain, and from the exterior it creates a diaphanous mass at night to define the building mass and elements such as the tower.”

Thomas Knittel, AIA LEED AP | VP, Senior Principal, Design HOK


“This building is wonderful. It represents so much. It springs forth from solid foundations. It has already changed the landscape and it screams out proudly that TCMC is here and is pointing toward the future.”

Dr. Lois Nora, Interim President and Dean, The Commonwealth Medical College

This new college attracts and keeps physicians in the area while providing an important economic engine. The Commonwealth Medical College (TCMC) is a freestanding, independent medical school with no university affiliation. This unique structure allows it to partner with different health science programs. Graduates are credentialed, community physicians trained in evidence-based medicine. The 64,000-sq.-ft. research space has 35 laboratories that support 16 principal investigators for wet research and four PIs for bioinformatics. The flexible labs, stairways and common areas offer ample amounts of natural light and promote collaboration. The west research wing and east educational wing surround a shared courtyard. This space between the two buildings acts as a hub where students gather and socialize at the grand porch, a courtyard and a café. The ground floor of the north structure contains a simulation facility with 12 mock exam rooms for standardized patients – actors portraying patients – and several suites for simulated surgical procedures using high-fidelity robotics. Sustainable design strategies include rainwater collection for the gardens, indigenous landscape material, a heat recovery system, carbon dioxide and occupancy sensors, high performance glazing, integrated daylight control through honeycombed transom glazing and the use of local stone.

Courtesy of HOK