USF unveils preliminary renderings for new medical school and cardiovascular institute in downtown Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. (Jan. 31, 2017) — The University of South Florida today unveiled preliminary renderings of the future home of its USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute in downtown Tampa.

The renderings offer an early look at USF’s newest state-of-the-art facility, which will combine under one roof a medical school to teach the next generation of physicians and a cardiovascular research institute to pioneer new discoveries for heart health. The $152.6-million building features angles and facets offering unique viewpoints from within and ample windows to allow reflective light into work and learning spaces.  Skanska/HOK is the design/build team constructing the new USF facility.  

“These early renderings are another powerful sign of how significant the University of South Florida’s growing presence in downtown Tampa is today,” said USF System President Judy Genshaft. “Co-locating our medical school and heart institute in the vibrant urban area of Tampa will attract more top-tier students and cardiovascular researchers, and energize our intent to bring more biotechnology, biomedical and pharmaceutical firms to this region. We are excited about seeing the construction of this fantastic facility over the next two years, as well as its lasting impact on the Tampa Bay economy.”

The USF Health building will be a key anchor in a $3-billion real estate development by Strategic Property Partners, the joint venture between Jeff Vinik and Cascade Investment, LLC. The group is developing 53 acres in downtown Tampa into a multi-use, urban waterfront district that will promote a walkable, sustainable, healthy environment for downtown Tampa residents, workers, students and visitors.

“The University of South Florida’s Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute will be an anchor for SPP’s project and for the larger downtown community. The school’s impact will extend beyond its physical presence and be felt throughout the urban core, bringing energy to the area with its students, researchers, and professors,” said Vinik.  “I am delighted that USF is one step closer to seeing this project come to fruition.”

Located at the corner of South Meridian Avenue and Channelside Drive, the new USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and the USF Health Heart Institute is expected to open in late 2019. The building will include learning and conference spaces, an auditorium, laboratories, faculty offices and a clinical research and care unit.

Among its many advantages, the new location puts the medical school closer to its primary teaching hospital Tampa General and the USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation, a competitive advantage for teaching tomorrow’s physicians, said Charles J. Lockwood, MD, senior vice president for USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine.

“News of the move to downtown is already having an impact on student and faculty recruitment,” Dr. Lockwood said. “In fact, since the announcement of our move, the number of applications to our medical school has increased 170 percent, or by nearly 2,500 students per year, the caliber of students applying is increasing as well, and we’ve recruited 12 of the 31 NIH-funded cardiovascular scientists who will conduct leading interdisciplinary biomedical research at the Heart Institute.”

Construction of the USF downtown facility is expected to begin August 2017, with building completion expected by late 2019.  The medical school and heart institute will be built with a combination of state and private funding.


The University of South Florida System is a high-impact, global research system dedicated to student success. The USF System includes three institutions: USF; USF St. Petersburg; and USF Sarasota-Manatee. The institutions are separately accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. All institutions have distinct missions and their own detailed strategic plans. Serving over 48,000 students, the USF System has an annual budget of $1.6 billion and an annual economic impact of $4.4 billion. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference.

Media contact:
Anne DeLotto Baier, USF Health Communications, or (813) 974-3303