Recently, Apple revealed the blueprints for its headquarters 2.0. The doughnut-shaped behemoth is set to become the shiny/new worktime home of 12,000 programmers, researchers, executives, and their respective cats (I’m guessing), and promises to be a boon to the economy of Cupertino, California, where it is to be built. Here at OHSU, we’ve been going through a bit of a space-crunch, of late, and so I’m reading about this at my OHSU workstation that I share with fourteen people. I am struck hard by the marked similarities between the present-day campuses (capai?) of Apple, Inc. & Oregon Health & Science University. Or maybe it was someone’s elbow…
Once upon a time, an impulsive railroad company purchased a plot of land in Portland, OR., sight unseen. “It’s Portland,” I imagine their board of directors reasoning, “how bad could it be?” One wonders why it took them thirty years to discover that the top of a hill is not a great place for a railroad. “But it is for a hospital!” The OHSU founding fathers were quick to console up the downcast railroad tycoons, “A single-lane road will surely provide plenty of room for all! Assorted traffic and horse-drawn ambulances alike! Or is it ambulai?”
And the rest, as they say, is history. Nearly 100 years after the start of our beloved Marquam Hill campus, we’ve managed to realize the impossible dream: a massive modern hospital, looming over the pristine landscape that is Portland, Oregon. An intellectual Mount Olympus overlooking its domain, and calling it good. A biomedical statue of liberty, calling out with silent lips:
Give me your tired, your poor
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free
Your adequately insured
But come by public transportation
Parking up here can be tricky
“Oh, Kyle,” my faithful readers are likely to think, “you’re being pretty dramatic and unrealistic. Look at the view! It’s not that bad up here! ”
It’s not that bad. Answer me this: deep down, aren’t all OHSU employees afraid of the day when the Tram Operators realize they could fit twice as many morning commuters inside if they were stacked horizontally? I know I am. And the view up here is pretty fantastic, I agree. Myself and my fourteen desk-mates have actually lucked out, being stationed on the level of the OHSU’s standard-issue bi-level cubicle. If cubicle block D2a adjusts their computer monitor just right, we can almost make out one of the trees adjacent to the Library.
But I digress. I come bearing solutions! An OHSU 2.0 for us all!
I submit Figure 1. Now, keep in mind that this is still a bit of a rough draft, and our Behavioral Neuroscientists will need to train the pigeons to keep the cloud buildings afloat, but I think this could really be the space-giving solution we’ve all been looking for.