Architectural and Structural Precast Concrete Featured in Award-Winning Project for Mercy Health-West Hospital in Ohio

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/UCW/ LANCASTER, PA – The Mid-Atlantic Precast Association (MAPA) recently announced that one of its precast concrete producers, High Concrete Group, has received industry honors for their Mercy Health–West Hospital project in Cincinnati, Ohio. High Concrete was named a 2016 PCI Design Award winner by the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI). They received the Best Healthcare/Medical Building award.


The state-of-the-art Mercy Health–West Hospital is the centerpiece for the healthcare center, replacing another aging facility within the network. The owners wanted a design that was both beautiful and high-performing, and designers turned to precast concrete to make that happen.

The façade of the building was inspired by Ohio’s tradition of pottery production, according to Glenn Ebersole, P.E., market development manager for High Concrete. It is clad with a thin-brick veneer in a series of radiused wall panels and spandrels that were then embellished with thousands of tiles in 12 shades of blue and green. An impressive 19 unique shapes were laid out in pixel pattern.

Using thin brick in the precast concrete panels significantly reduced the overall project duration by enabling the tiles to be laid during manufacturing, rather than hand-setting them in the field. However, Ebersole shared that putting such a complex and decorative design together was not easy. “The biggest challenge was casting-in and coordinating the design and layout of the more than 160,000 pieces of glazed tiles into the architectural precast panels.” The veneer was also glazed to blend with the design.


Along with offering a beautiful façade, the use of precast concrete brought several additional benefits to the building, including versatility of design, accelerated construction time, improved thermal performance, reduced long-term life-cycle costs and increased fire and storm resistance.

To meet the client’s energy-efficiency goals, the designer chose a unique insulated sandwich panel design that contributed to the overall energy efficiency of the building, while the radiused wall systems allowed versatility of shape for the structure. The insulated sandwich panels feature two solid concrete wythes that are both prestressed and have steel and wire-mesh reinforcement. “By nature, these steel-reinforced concrete wall panels cannot be matched for durability or structural integrity,” shared Ebersole.

The result is a beautiful, durable structure that met all the goals of the owners. Ebersole added, “This project showcases the high-performance attributes of precast concrete in a variety of ways.”
For video content and a project photo gallery, visit the Mercy Health-West Hospital Project Profile on the MAPA website.


Location: Cincinnati, OH
Precast Producer & Precast Specialty Engineer: High Concrete Group, LLC (Denver, PA)
Owner: Mercy Health Partners (Cincinnati, OH)
Architect: Champlin Architecture (Cincinnati, OH)
Engineer: THP Ltd. (Cincinnati, OH)
Contractor: Turner Construction Company (Cincinnati, OH)
Project Cost: $200 million
Square Footage: 645,000
Structural Precast Elements: Insulated precast concrete sandwich all panels featuring two prestressed solid concrete withes, with steel and wire-mesh reinforcement
Architectural Precast Elements: Architectural precast concrete panels were embellished with 160,000 pieces of glazed tile in multiple shapes and colors


The Mid-Atlantic Precast Association (MAPA) is a professional marketing organization committed to the growth and greater profitability of the Precast Industry in the Mid-Atlantic region. Founded in 1978, MAPA is comprised of 13 prestressed/precast producer member firms located throughout the Mid-Atlantic States, including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. The organization is closely associated with the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI) and has over 50 associate member companies that produce a variety of concrete industry related products. For more information, visit

Kae G. Wagner
[email protected]
+1 (717) 392-6982 Ext: 1

Tom Holmes