The new ‘Golden Jubilee’ Wing replaced part of an existing 1913 ‘Florence Nightingale’ hospital offering a prominent, yet integral contemporary addition. The challenge for the design team was to create a building which could accommodate future medical changes on a tight urban site surrounded by a fully operational acute hospital. The large wing consists of a range of departments and services surrounding a striking six-storey atrium which allows departments to be arranged around the perimeter taking advantage of natural light, ventilation and good adjacencies to existing departments. The central atrium contains vertical circulation and service risers along with glazed horizontal links centrally connecting the upper floors allowing for the surrounding floor plates to be densely packed and uninterrupted (a benefit for future versatility). Both the interior and exterior interweave modern and traditional materials and features (e.g. matching stone and brick of existing hospital).
The wing consists of a plethora of solutions to which augment future change. The building was designed as ‘Shell and Core’ separating the structure and services (long-lasting) with the infill elements (short-lasting). A regular, uninterrupted structural grid (7.2m x 7,2m) along with a flat slab containing no downstanding beams and service zones in the structure around each column, allow penetration for future services if required, complemented with an unobstructed ceiling void allowing for future change to be less disruptive. Identically sized floor plates and corridor locations along with generous and consistent floor to floor heights allow departments and wards to be converted easily (e.g. the building started with 3 ambulatory care floors and 4 ward floors and now has 4 ambulatory care floors and 3 inpatient). The convertibility of rooms is enhanced by the window design allowing for 3 conditions (100mm low level/ 300mm on high level restricted, fully operable and sealed). As patient rooms they are currently 100mm/ 300mm restricted, but could be changed to fully operable if the room was converted into an office space. In addition, curtain wall panels could be refitted easily upon aesthetic or functional necessity.
Images courtesy of Nightingale Associates