Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr

Text description provided by the architects. Glasblokkene at Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen is an ambitious vision for a comprehensive pediatric and women’s hospital, where all expertise related to children, youth, and women converges in a singular facility. The holistic patient view, encompassing both physical and mental challenges, following the patient in a life-course perspective until adulthood, innovates how to offer healthcare services to children. Comprising eight building blocks, Glasblokkene was completed in two phases; the second phase was unveiled in December 2023. It is one of the world’s first fully digital and hence resource efficient hospital construction projects. Focus on energy efficiency and sustainability right from the beginning has resulted in numerous green solutions and the best energy label in the market.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Exterior Photography, Windows, Facade

Architectural Vision. The architectural concept focuses on creating a humane and welcoming environment. By breaking down the building mass into narrow tangents, the hospital integrates into its surroundings and allows natural light to flow abundantly into the hospital. This design approach ensures a human scale, offering visitors an immediate understanding of the warm and inviting atmosphere that awaits inside. The placement of the blocks, on a green slope, enhances the connection between the exterior and interior, pulling nature inside for a healing impact.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Exterior Photography, Windows, Facade
Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Exterior Photography, Facade, Windows
Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Image 41 of 49

Child-Centric Design. A paramount objective in Glasblokkene is to let children be children, even when they are patients. The hospital prioritizes spaces for physical activity and relaxation, promoting an atmosphere where the emphasis is not solely on medical functions but also well-being. The main entrance features a play area, fostering a positive energy with active children visible through the windows when arriving at the hospital.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Living Room, Table, Chair
Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Table, Windows, Chair
Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Living Room

Bespoke Interior Design. To enhance the overall experience, Glasblokkene incorporates custom-designed furniture in warm, natural materials and vibrant colors. All patient rooms include an extra bed for parents or partners, demonstrating a thoughtful consideration for family needs. This personalized approach aims to minimize institutional features and create a space where patients, staff, and visitors can thrive.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Kitchen

Flow and Functionality. The building blocks create a clear wayfinding with separate flows for the public and staff, where each block is assigned a distinct color, used in the interior to aid wayfinding. The blocks are interconnected by walkways, and on the ground floor, through lounges, auditorium, and a multipurpose gathering staircase. The materials used create a clear connection between the exterior and interior.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Living Room, Table, Windows, Chair

Democratic Design. Favoring democratic design, the hospital allocates corner spaces with the best views for shared functions or isolation rooms.

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Interior Photography, Windows

Healing Gardens and Integration of Art. Recognizing the therapeutic benefits, Glasblokkene integrates nature and art into its design. Patient rooms and common areas offer views of natural surroundings, contributing to stress reduction and improved well-being. The hospital’s gardens feature local vegetation, providing sensory experiences and opportunities for both relaxation and movement. Tactile art elements, like scattered “pearls” around the site invite exploration, creating a playful and engaging environment within the hospital’s grounds. The integration of art, both inside and outside, enhances the aesthetic appeal and opportunities for small adventures. 

Glasblokkene Haukeland Hospital for Children Youth and Women / KHR Arkitekter + Studio PKA + Henning Larsen + Schönherr - Exterior Photography, Cityscape

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