In Leeds in England, Kragh&Berglund has created a number of rooftop terrasses and a front plaza for the city’s new state-of-the-art hospital, which emphasizes patient care and flexibility. Leeds General Infirmary combines central hospital functions including pediatric and maternity wards, all of this in one of the city’s densest neighborhoods. The project strives to create a framework that offers an alternative to the clinical world to promote wellbeing and serve non-disease-related purposes.
The landscape project is based on the idea of the landscape as healer and teacher; one that allows disease and stress to fade into the background. Rooftop terraces in several levels constitute a fifth facade and is intended to give patients, visitors, and staff access to green spaces. The experience of nature with its sounds and textures provides an opportunity to use the senses in a way that is supposed to benefit as many people as possible regardless of their age and condition. Integrating universal design has been a matter of course.
ALL SENSES ACTIVATED
One of the main priorities was to create informal spaces where the relaxed atmosphere can help calm down stressed patients, for instance by designing a hilly and unceremonious landscape on the forecourt. The geometry is intended to invite people in and both locals and visitors should be able to benefit from the park. The landscape is inspired by the surrounding nature in The Penines and helps support biodiversity in the area by using local species in the planting. The project also involves local rainwater drainage, which will help the city handle future water-related challenges.