New Hospital of South Salento

The healing power of nature and landscape in Hospital design

Mario Cucinella Architects together ad AICOM S.p.A., RINA Consulting S.p.A, GAe Engineering S.r.l., Dr. Enzo Rizzato, and the consultancy of Mobility in Chain, has won the tender issued by the Local Health Authority of the city of Lecce, for the construction of the New Hospital of “Sud Salento”, in Italy.

The vision behind the concept of the new hospital comes from the objective of combining the functional need of realizing a high standards public project with the ambition of realizing an architecture, sensitive to the intrinsic characteristic of the site, sustainable, and human. The project aims to combine the efficacy and rigor of the technique with the creativity and warmth of a design that has a “humanization” purpose.

The project considered the two aspects of a patient life, the “zoé”, the vital condition related to health and the physical body, and “bios”, in this case the individual existence, as equally important – so the spaces destined for diagnostics, emergencies and the primary needs of the disease are treated with the same design care of the spaces dedicated to the healing power of the environment.

The concept is a unitarian and iconic design, interacting with the particular morphology of the long and tight area, constricted between two road infrastructures. The architecture unfolds in three main volumes, developed on three floors, which like a living entity flexes and recedes over the limits of the lot, to protect and safeguard the most sensitive areas such the triage and the patient’s rooms.

These setbacks, which do not interrupt the internal functional connections between the different areas consents to realize some big landscape elements, a series of hills covered in trees, which further protect against noise and offer undeniable quality views to the patient’s space and to the work environment.
The proposed architectural complex, matured from the structural translation of the welfare functions (the form derives from the function), allows to allocate the areas of hospitalization (more than 400 beds) and the related diagnostic support activities (including the emergency-urgency area) in the two buildings located in the South while in the North are concentrated out-patient functions (clinics, withdrawals, dialysis, pre-receipt, etc.).

This factory also houses the care area for the mother and the child, which, while benefiting from the horizontal and vertical connections of the hospital’s care infrastructures, is able to maintain its own identity and spatial specificity.

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