The new hospital of Amatrice has a symbolic value, not only with it being a hospital in a disadvantaged area, but also as it is one of the first buildings which gives way to the post-earthquake reconstruction of the town.
Based on the principle of memory being an integral part of the reconstruction, and that the post-earthquake regeneration cannot be simply considered a reconstruction of the urban fabric, but mainly as a reconstruction of the human fabric, one understands the attention given to each architectural element which makes up the entirety of the intervention.
The building is composed from two core bodies, which contain different functions, joining with one another like the building connects with the surrounding area. The spatial volumes of the building’s core bodies recall an immediate connection to the architecture of Amatrice, as do the colours of the façades.
The breakdown of the elements brings the building back to an urban scale, the scale which was in fact lost due to the earthquake.
The module colours of the ventilated façade in extruded stoneware are inspired by the accurately analysed colours of the facades from Amatrice’s old main street, so to bring back memories of a familiar atmosphere and in order not to distort what was considered a characteristic element of the town’s streets.
The visual axes, chosen over heliothermic axes, allow for a view on the surrounding landscape, as well as the creation of an internal courtyard used as a therapeutic garden, which provides a space for “garden healing”. The benefits of a contact with the natural elements (sun, air, water, plants, animals) are many, and relate to all three spheres of a physical-mental-social health.
All the spaces, internal and external, have been designed to favour health and wellbeing. The efforts, also conducted by the medical field so to develop care methods centred around the person (and not around the disease) are made concrete through the spatial quality, where the design is aware of the close relationship that exists between this and health.
The aesthetic and functional characterisation of the spaces has been set based on the key themes, in order to provide a “hospital model” that no longer frames the hospital as a production machine, but as a welcoming space in which the respect for the individual, the comfort, the privacy and the ease of orientation are essential requirements to ensure that the architectural organism portrays connotations of “positivity”, complexity and wholeness, otherwise unknown to the consolidated typology, thus surrogating in the popular imagination the traditional value of the “social isolator” within the “social aggregator”.
All the highly evocative aspects that this hospital is demanded to portray correspond to functional and technological motivations which have, in all hospitals, restricting conditions.
The topographic layout along the access road permits a recognisability for the users and allows a division of the different user routes (an obligatory condition for the functioning of the hospital).
The breakdown in blocks of different technological levels allows for a more efficient control of the building systems, as every part of the building has a different function and therefore different weightings of the building systems.
The integrated design of the architectural components and building systems allows the knock-down of the primary energy required by the building, granting the highest qualitative standards of the internal thermal comfort, as well as the use of renewable energy sources and a minimised waste of natural resources.
The building envelope has been studied to reduce the thermal dispersion of the building, and consequently to reduce the amount of energy necessary for the heating and cooling of the internal spaces. Based on the principle that the first way to reduce consumption levels is to not consume, the envelope was designed with a thermal transmittance inferior to that provided by the legislations.
Finally, the characteristic of the hospital typology in a disadvantaged area entails an equipping of important software regarding telemedicine, and for this reason the design has provided for specific rooms destined to such scope within each ward.
VALLE 3.0 is a company born from a spin-off of Studio Valle Progettazioni, and focuses mainly on Architecture, Civil Engineering and Urban planning.
Emanuela, Maria Camilla and Silvano Valle along with their father Gilberto, start Valle 3.0 in 2016, a Company of Architecture, oriented towards technological and environmental innovation. After years of experience, history and tradition we are ready to tackle with our usual passion and with the same skills, new challenges in new future scenarios.
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