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Groundbreaking Ceremony for New UPMC Vision and Rehabilitation Tower

For Journalists

Gloria Kreps
Senior Director

Andrea Kunicky

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Contact UPMC at

1-800-533-UPMC (8762).

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WHAT: Groundbreaking ceremony for the new UPMC Vision and Rehabilitation Tower at UPMC Mercy


The UPMC Vision and Rehabilitation Tower, expected to open in late 2022, is being designed for the many patients in the Pittsburgh region and beyond who need physical rehabilitation and those who have diseases of the eye or vision impairment. 


Highlights of the new nine-story tower will include:


  • 410,000-square-feet of collaborative space for clinicians, researchers, educators and industry partners.
  • State-of-the-art facility to deliver gene and cell therapy to the eye.
  • Innovative, fully mocked-up apartment where patients can relearn critical life skills.
  • A 3-D street lab with simulated city streets, offices and meeting rooms to help patients with low vision navigate their surroundings.


Other areas in the building will include exam rooms, an optical shop, a pharmacy, therapy stations and a UPMC Center for Rehab Services gym. Training ramps and stairs in a healing garden on the roof terrace will offer patients a safe environment in which to prepare for real-life experiences.


The UPMC Vision and Rehabilitation Tower is one of three facilities being built as part of UPMC’s $2 billion investment in specialty care. 


These new facilities will add to UPMC’s breadth of advanced specialty care for patients at UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital, UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital and UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.


Architecture firm HOK, based in New York and Washington, D.C., designed the new tower, which will be built by MascaroBarton Malow.




  • Jeffrey A. Romoff, president and chief executive officer, UPMC
  • The Most Reverend David Zubik, Bishop, Diocese of Pittsburgh
  • Rich Fitzgerald, Allegheny County Executive
  • Michael Grace, president, UPMC Mercy 
  • José-Alain Sahel, M.D., director, UPMC Eye Center 
  • Gwendolyn Sowa, M.D., Ph.D., director, UPMC Rehabilitation Institute 


WHEN: 10:30 a.m., Thursday, March 14


WHERE: UPMC Mercy, 1400 Locust St., Pittsburgh, 15219.


Note to Media: Park in the garage. Validation will be provided when exiting the garage. If a vehicle doesn’t fit in the garage, please proceed to Pride Street. To cover this event, please contact Andrea Kunicky in advance at 412-692-6254 or
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