Hartford HealthCare’s New Downtown HQ Focuses on Innovation

December 4, 2022

Exclaiming that Hartford HealthCare’s new 110,000-square-foot headquarters at 100 Pearl St. “will be a model for healthcare transformation in this country,” President and CEO Jeffrey Flaks touted the office complex, which will house 700 employees, during a celebration and dedication Nov. 17, with more than 350 of the state’s top political, health, education and business leaders.

Flaks and HHC officials said that putting more resources and employees under one roof would not only save money but also allow the health system to become a destination for collaborative health care.

The $14-million move and renovation project also aims to build momentum for downtown Hartford, which has slowly recovered from the pandemic as many companies have embraced a remote or hybrid work model, which has left fewer workers downtown on a daily basis. The trend has also led many Hartford companies to scale back their downtown office footprints.

Hartford HealthCare is taking the opposite approach.

“This building is about starting a movement in Hartford and for the Capital City to be successful,” Flaks said.

Innovation Culture

Hartford HealthCare’s new office space aims to help the health system better coordinate care statewide and is a node for scheduling, imaging, electronic health records and other technology — all in one location.

It is adorned with creative artwork by three Connecticut-based muralists. Those walking into the doors at 100 Pearl will first see a pulsating heart structure in the lobby.

On the exterior, a glass cube is a defining feature at the corner of Pearl and Trumbull streets. It was modeled after Apple’s New York City office on Fifth Avenue.

In May, HHC had nearly 200 people in the building; that number will rise to 700 as construction nears completion. HHC currently occupies the building’s first and second floors, as well as the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth floors.

The ninth floor will be finalized and occupied in the spring, officials said. Many of the downtown Hartford employees have or will be moving from other HHC locations in Newington, Farmington and Wethersfield.

HHC is also in the process of moving its executive offices from the 19th floor of the One State Street office tower on Columbus Boulevard to the second floor at 100 Pearl, which has 250,000 square feet in total and is owned by the city’s largest landlord, Shelbourne Global Solutions.

Other support services and departments that will be housed in the new headquarters include content strategy, legal, human resources, marketing, supply chain, compliance and risk, and human resources.

Flaks said the building, including even room names, will be focused on creating a culture of innovation and collaboration.

For example, the “Launch” room will be a brainstorming area where innovative ideas are shared. Other rooms in the building carry names like “Rise,” “Launch,” “Imagine,” “Vibe,” “Aspire” and “Transform.”

HHC officials said there will also be space for digital health startups. In October, Hartford HealthCare announced a partnership with five digital health startups with the mission of improving patient care and making it more accessible.

The startups — Viora Health, Bloomlife, CareAdvisors, NourishedRx and Sonavi Labs — will hold regular meetings at 100 Pearl and have access to Hartford HealthCare’s clinicians and business leaders, officials said.

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin joined in the chorus of those who said HHC’s decision to move its headquarters into the heart of the city was vital, at a time when many companies were doing the opposite.

“There are a lot of healthcare companies not looking to invest in this community, but (Hartford HealthCare) made the deliberate effort to invest in health care and invest in Hartford,” Bronin said. “You are an economic engine, an attractor of capital, an attractor of talent.”

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