Why are you rebuilding Lenox Hill Hospital? What are your goals for the renewal?

  • Lenox Hill Hospital is an iconic New York institution that has served the community since 1857. Comprised of ten separate buildings, with several erected more than a century ago, the buildings are simply not configured and equipped to effectively deliver the next generation of care.
  • We are planning to revitalize Lenox Hill into a hospital ready to care for future generations. This will ensure the hospital remains at the forefront of clinical care, both regionally and nationally for years to come.
  • This new facility will be a purpose-built hospital that will feature all single-bedded patient rooms, an expanded emergency department, new surgical suites and other larger clinical spaces. Planned upgrades include:
    • Patient Rooms: Like most modern hospitals, Lenox Hill is looking to move away from multi-bedded rooms. Plans call for converting to all single-bedded patient rooms, which will give greater privacy to patients and their families, reduce the risk of infections and improve staff workflow.
    • Operating Rooms: Plans call for expanding the size and number of operating rooms to accommodate new and emerging technology and equipment, streamline operational efficiency, and improve patient and staff experiences.
    • Emergency Department: Currently treating about 56,000 emergency patients annually, the hospital is looking to significantly expand its existing, 14,300 square-foot emergency department to meet and improve the patient experience.
    • Mother-Baby Hospital: Building on Lenox Hill’s rich history of maternity services, we will look to establish a dedicated “mother-baby” hospital to accommodate mothers and family members in an elegant, private setting. With its own separate entrance, the facility would feature an expanded Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and a range of obstetrics and gynecology (Ob-Gyn) services, including more labor and delivery suites, newborn nurseries and other specialty services.
  • As part of the revitalization, the hospital is also seeking to dramatically improve traffic congestion during the hospital’s busiest times. Currently, the 77th Street entrance to the hospital’s emergency department exposes patients to vehicular traffic, bikes and pedestrians. In addition, the hospital’s loading docks cannot fully accommodate trucks periodically leading to blocked sidewalks.


Why is this the best plan for Lenox? 

  • At the outset of this process, Lenox Hill Hospital undertook a rigorous, multi-year strategic planning effort based on the future health needs of the community we serve which formed the basis of establishing the clinical programs and services that need to be located at the hospital. This planning work looked years ahead using analytics and extensive consultation with Lenox Hill Hospital’s expert nurses, doctors and staff. This research serves as the foundation for the hospital’s ongoing design work and drives the overall size and shape of the proposed hospital.
  • Since 2010, when Northwell partnered with Lenox Hill Hospital, there’s been an increased demand for inpatient services at the hospital, counter to the city-wide trend of decreasing discharges. The comprehensive clinical programs we are planning for the future hospital incorporates this growth, along with historical data and an industry trend analysis.


Why is there a residential building in this plan?

  • The proposed hospital will ensure that Lenox Hill continues to provide critical, world-class healthcare for generations to come. Realizing this vision will require a substantial financial investment, which cannot be achieved without monetization of a portion of the hospital’s valuable real estate.
  • This strategy has served as a lifeline for many cherished New York not-for-profit health, educational, religious and cultural institutions, including Beth Israel’s upcoming rebuild in Gramercy, Union Theological Seminary’s restoration in Morningside Heights, Brooklyn Public Library’s Brooklyn Heights branch reconstruction and St. Patrick Cathedral’s preservation. Each was able to leverage its real estate to secure its future.


Why not renovate?

  • Since 2010, Northwell Health has invested over $200 million to upgrade the hospital, yet it still isn’t configured and equipped to effectively deliver the next generation of care. Increasing costs to maintain the outdated facility makes it exorbitantly expensive to continue to deliver the highest quality care.


How many more beds and/or patients will you be able to accommodate?

  • Healthcare is undergoing a rapid transformation. Hospital leadership has been undergoing an exhaustive strategic planning exercise to determine the appropriate size for the future hospital with continuity of essential services at needed levels. We are still in the process of finalizing programming at the hospital and will provide that information when available.


What are your plans for construction impacts on the community?

  • We are still very early in the planning and approval process for this important project. Lenox Hill Hospital is committed to a transparent construction process with signage and regular updates. We will engage in numerous discussions with the City, our neighbors, staff and other stakeholder groups.
  • We are engaging a prominent international engineering firm and construction manager who have overseen projects of similar scale, to ensure the safety of our patrons and staff throughout the process.


Will hospital care be reduced during the construction? 

  • The proposed project will be implemented in phases to allow the hospital to remain open and fully operational at the same level of care.
  • We are committed to a transparent construction process, and hospital leadership will communicate clearly and regularly with staff, patients and community members via email and on our website.
  • While we recognize this will be an inconvenience for patients, neighbors and hospital staff in the interim, this revitalization will provide longer-term improvements that will benefit the entire community for years to come.


What will the new hospital look like and how tall will the hospital be?

  • We are committed to architecture that complements Lenox Hill Hospital’s long-time home. New York City-based Ennead Architects was selected for this project because of their deep experience designing public institutions in historic neighborhoods. EwingCole, a firm with extensive hospital design expertise, is also part of the architecture team.
  • Before starting the conceptual design process, Lenox Hill Hospital undertook a rigorous strategic planning effort to determine the best program to meet the community and city’s health care needs. This work guided the design and ensures the hospital will continue to provide the world-class medical services New Yorkers expect from Lenox Hill Hospital.
  • The physical structure must meet contemporary space standards and requirements to provide high-quality clinical care, while also providing flexibility to accommodate technology that has not yet been invented. Since 1992, Lenox Hill Hospital’s peer institutions on average have expanded 975,000 square feet to meet the regulatory requirements of modern-day hospitals like single-bedded rooms, space minimums for clinical and operating rooms, natural light requirements and intensive care/critical care ratios. In the same period, while Lenox Hill Hospital has invested over $200 million in the hospital facility, it has also been severely limited by the existing buildings and unable to grow to accommodate these new program requirements.


What community resources will the hospital offer?

  • Lenox Hill Hospital takes its responsibility as a community resource seriously. In addition to hosting support groups that counsel patients and family members dealing with serious health conditions, the hospital regularly hosts events ranging from health fairs and conferences to community board meetings and community resource fairs. A rebuilt Lenox Hill Hospital will be designed to expand this critical work, focusing on everything from creating shared, programmable community spaces to a more welcoming and accessible streetscape.
  • We will share more details when we can, but our core mission is to make Lenox Hill Hospital a place that our neighbors rely on not only when they are sick but when they are healthy.


How are you going to keep the community in the loop about the project?

  • We are at the beginning of the process and are committed to open communication. With that in mind, we will move thoughtfully through the process, updating the community, patients, physicians and staff and engaging with stakeholders, elected officials and both the Upper East Side and citywide communities as we explore ways to preserve the highest possible standard of care for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers.
  • We have dedicated a Lenox Hill executive leader, Joshua Strugatz, Vice President of Manhattan Redevelopment, to serve as the hospital’s liaison who will field questions and provide updates to the community. We also have our website, RenewingLenox.org, where we will post construction updates and will also provide email announcements. You can also email renewinglenox@northwell.edu or call 212-434-4360 with further inquiries.


What is the timing of the project?

  • We are at the beginning of the process and will work closely with both the City and local elected officials over the next year as we move forward. Once the project is approved, construction will occur in phases to allow the hospital to remain open and fully operational at the same level of care.
  • We are committed to open and timely communication and will update the community, patients, physicians and staff with more information on exact timing as it becomes available.


What other projects in the neighborhood are you working on?

  • We are working on these additional projects:
    • On Third Avenue, this site is expected to be a home for ambulatory surgery, imaging, physician offices and cancer-related services. We are still in the early stages and will provide updates as those plans mature and evolve. The building will follow existing zoning and land use policies. It will not be a receiving point for ambulances and emergency vehicles.
    • 115 East 75th Street, is a four-story, 20,450 square foot parking garage located within the Upper East Side Historic District. The parking garage was constructed in the 1880s as a carriage house and riding academy. It has been used as a garage for most of its existence and heavily modified since its original construction. Lenox Hill recently agreed to a long-term lease for this property. Our future plan calls for an extensive exterior renovation to restore original, historic exterior details, and an interior renovation to accommodate new physician medical practices. The hospital has been working with various community groups to develop a thoughtfully designed restoration to preserve a building in a historic district.
  • These projects reiterate our commitment to the Upper East Side and providing the highest quality clinical care to the community. We are continuously deepening our network by investing in and building out our Manhattan campus locations.