CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee has selected the team of Duda/Paine Architects and HKS Architects, Inc. to design the company’s planned corporate campus on Cameron Hill. Duda/Paine and HKS were chosen from among 16 architectural firms renowned for their design of corporate and/or health care facilities.

Duda/Paine will be in charge of the overall design of the BlueCross campus, while HKS will be the architect-of-record and produce documents for construction. Under the terms of the contract, the two firms will select a local architectural firm to become a part of the project design team.

“We’ve worked through a long and detailed process with The Staubach Company to find what we feel is the best design team in the nation, said Bob Worthington, senior vice president at BlueCross. “The combination of Duda/Paine, HKS and a local firm will deliver a campus that sets the standards for visual design and operational efficiency. We expect that the talent of this winning partnership will produce not only an architectural symbol to our city but also a source of pride for all Tennesseans.”

Selection of Duda/Paine and HKS came after an extensive search process overseen by a 12-member core project team of BlueCross employees. The three-month process involved a review of proposals by national, regional, and Tennessee-based architectural firms, visits to home offices of selected candidate firms, tours of sample office complexes designed by the candidates, and presentations by the finalists.

Duda/Paine, headquartered in Durham, N.C., is considered one of the nation’s leading young design firms. HKS, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is one of the nation’s largest architectural firms.

Both Turan Duda and Jeff Paine, the partners of the Duda/Paine firm, worked for many years for renowned architect Cesar Pelli. Among architects, they are considered two of the most promising designers in the nation. Both have committed their personal involvement in the Cameron Hill project.

“Turan Duda and I are honored to be selected by BlueCross to design the company’s new home on Cameron Hill. The thorough process employed by the core project team for the selection of the architects makes this appointment even more meaningful for us,” Paine said. “We look forward to creating a wonderful new BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee workplace environment focused on the employee.”

The projected $226-million Cameron Hill campus will house BlueCross’ 3,800 Chattanooga-based employees in approximately 800,000 square feet of office space. Based on a review and confirmation of the workplace strategist’s final recommendations, these size and cost projections could change.

“The final presentations made by these firms display an understanding of our need to create an innovative and enjoyable work environment and to maximize functionality of the workplace for the benefit of our employees and members,” Worthington said.

Duda/Paine and HKS projects similar in size and scope to the BlueCross campus include the Cox Enterprises corporate headquarters in Atlanta; Pier 1 Imports corporate campus in Fort Worth, Texas; Frost Bank Tower in Austin, Texas; and Time-Warner Cable corporate headquarters in Charlotte, N.C.

BlueCross and the architect team will establish a design studio where various concepts, drawings and master plans for the new campus will be displayed. Planned for location in the company’s Hub Building on Broad Street, the studio will be used to solicit employee and community feedback for the project. The initial design should be ready by late spring, 2006.

About BlueCross

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee's mission is to provide its customers and communities with peace of mind through affordable solutions for health and healing, life and living. Founded in 1945, the Chattanooga-based company is focused on reinventing the health plan for its 3 million members in Tennessee and across the country. Through its integrated health management approach, BlueCross provides patient-centric products and services that drive health improvement and positively impact health care quality and value. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc. is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association. For more information, visit the company's website at www.bcbst.com.