Irish lace needle work with translucent and layered qualities inspires the design of Dublin's new medical centre
A new acute care medical center has been planned for the St. James Hospital medical district (Ospidéal San Séamas), the largest academic teaching hospital in Dublin, Ireland. The new facility is intended to support the hospital’s mission to create environments and the circumstances in which education and research in the health science and allied areas is possible and flourishes.
Located near the main teaching campus and general hospital, the building anchors the southwest corner of the medical district and is directly adjacent to the Rialto Metro stop on the Luas Line that connects the district to central Dublin.
The concept for the new facility was developed in two elements: plan and shell. The plan was derived from urban studies of the general organisation of Dublin around the River Liffey and Dublin Harbour. The shell of the building uses a kit of parts inspired by the patterns found in Irish lace needle work and the translucent and layered qualities that they embody.
The building’s mass is defined by materials and forms that create a diverse yet cohesive composition. The L-shaped bed tower shifts to the east suspending it over the public plaza adjacent to the Rialto metro station, thus minimising the encroachment to singular support and exit stair. This shift also allows the western mass of the building to soften the transition to the residential neighborhoods across the street. The kit of parts includes photovoltaic fins, curtain wall, channel glass and a custom metal panel system that has been developed in cooperation with ame Ireland.
The new eight-storey St. James Medical Centre facility will include 185 medical / surgical beds, 10 ICU beds, eight operating theaters, PACU, endoscopy, clinics, minor medical, dietary, car park, retail / café, central atrium and administrative offices.