Health and Well-being Centre, KalasatamaRealized
Helin & Co Architects
Helin & Co Architects
|Categories||Architectural Design > Medical facilities|
An old harbour and industrial area, Kalasatama is transforming into a modern part of Helsinki centre. In addition to the needs of 20 000 new inhabitants, health services of scattered small and outdated premises nearby are collected to the new Health and Well-being Centre. The centre is situated in a node of public transport, an environment defined as an area of special accessibility standards. The routes from public means of transport to the main entrance are accessible and uninterrupted. To ensure accessibility in winter, the pavement in the arcade in front of the centre is heated. The City’s accessibility officer, various organisations of disabled persons and experiment users assisted in the design work.
By means of architecture, a big construction expresses care and human approach. The focus is on the client’s experience, and the objective was to create a public building that radiates outward care and is open and inviting. This was achieved by a warm colour scheme, presence of daylight and beautiful proportions.
For the first time, a range of health and social services as wide as here is available under the same roof: services of health care, dental care and psychiatry as well as diverse counselling and other services including immigration unit. There are plenty of group spaces and equipment for e.g. music therapy and physiotherapy. The spaces are flexible and multi-purpose, and also available for third-sector operators, such as patient organisations.
Multisector professionals of social welfare and health are working in close collaboration, enabling comprehensive services to the clients. The innovative operation model aims to rapid identification of clients who need long-term care. Those without an appointment are guided to assessment rooms, where their need for help is evaluated and they are referred to the right expert. The consulting rooms are generic and shared by the employees, their occupants change as they are vacated. Different services interlace since rooms are furnished to meet diverse needs; only oral health care and laboratories, which need special equipment, have specific spaces.
The consulting and treatment rooms surround the building’s centre area, which houses the background work spaces of employees. These receive daylight through two large light wells as well as the high opal glass windows and top windows of the consulting rooms. Both light wells have colourful mobiles by artist Jenni Rope installed in them, serving also as sound-abating elements in the high lobby areas.
The design was to observe especially the client user’s perspective. The staff areas enable cumulative advancement of know-how. Positive coexistence and, on the other hand, the possibility to work in privacy raise the efficiency and level of work. Networking in multidisciplinary teams increases the meaningfulness of work, which is also a pull factor in recruiting.
In accordance with Helsinki City’s strict energy performance requirements, a wide range of calculations and simulations concerning heating, cooling and energy consumption were utilised in the design work. A green roof growing sedum contributes to improving air quality and assists in rainwater management. The building is LEED Gold certified.