ofThe Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton, designed by BDP, has won the Prime Minister’s Better Public Building Award, at a ceremony in London last night (Wednesday 08 October 2008). The award is a special category of the British Construction Industry Awards and is sponsored jointly by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE) and the Office of Government Commerce (OGC).
The children’s hospital was chosen from a shortlist of twenty one public building projects, that best demonstrate high-quality design, together with efficient procurement; economic and social value; good team work between client, designer and contractor; sound financial management and whole-life value for money; and sustainability.
The new hospital which opened last year, has already won the top award from the International Academy for Design & Health. One of only seven dedicated paediatric hospitals in the UK, it has been designed not to feel like a hospital. A top priority was for daylight and the design of shallow floors with day lit spaces has made the building very sustainable. The user and children-centered approach extends to all aspects of the design for this 15,500 sqm, 100 bed hospital: from the clinical-planning studies, which led to the departmental organisation, placing inpatients above and outpatients below clinical support, and ward layouts, which place all the bedrooms on the sea-view side, to the development of lighting, user-friendly environmental controls and child-scaled furniture and windows.
The judges said of the winning design “An uplifting project which has given young patients in Brighton the best possible environment – one which functions like a hospital but does not feel like a hospital.”
Prime Minister Gordon Brown said: "This award showcases what can be achieved when high-quality design is coupled with highly effective delivery. I hope that the Alex will prove to be an inspiration to other planners, developers and architects."
Managing Director of Kajima Partnerships Ltd Julian Rudd-Jones said “All of us at Kajima are incredibly proud to have worked with BDP in creating this wonderful building, The true triumph of BDP is that having come up with an original and challenging concept you then made it work at the detailed engineering level.”
BDP Director Benedict Zucchi said “It was a once on a lifetime project with a very supportive client that really brought out the best in us as designers.”
The client was Kajima Construction Europe/ Brighton & Sussex University Hospital NHS Trust. BDP was appointed as architect, interior designer, building services engineer, civil & structural engineer, lighting designer and acoustic consultant for the £37 million project.
BDP is the first practice whose projects have won the award twice, Bournemouth Central Library being the winners of the award in 2003.