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VK Architects & Engineers designs new healing environment in Tienen


The Heilig Hart Tienen Regional Hospital appoints VK Architects & Engineers as the laureate of the design competition for the construction of a new 351-bed hospital on the St Jan campus.

The RZ Tienen wants to combine the two outdated campuses Mariëndal and St.-Jan in an innovative and sustainable new construction project.

The hospital's design rests on five touchstones. These are linked to the general mission and vision of RZ H. Hart Tienen: efficiency, flexibility, experience, sustainability and innovation.

A compact programme with the layer’s method

An important criterion when designing a flexible health centre is the application of the layer's method. This involves the definition of four building sections, which divide the hospital into a hotfloor (medical services), a hotel (nursing units), an office (consultations and administration) and a factory (lab, pharmacy, kitchen, central sterilisation department...). Each of these components has its own specific dimensions, flexibility and finishing.

These four components are located around a central atrium with a green character, for, among other things, the reception, the waiting areas, the meeting and co-working areas. The atrium connects the various building components with each other. At the same time, it functions as a natural division between the public aspect on the hotel side and the more logistic and medical aspect on the hot floor side.

All functions are compactly accommodated in seven storeys. This reduces the hospital's footprint and ensures efficient circulation.

A striking building on a green site

The facade - a continuous, organic band of vertical slats - binds the building components together and ensures the unity and legibility of the campus. The austere rhythm of the vertical façade reflects the internal flexibility.

The facade plan is drawn up according to the principles of "evidence-based", "performance-based" and "parametric" design and gives shape to the pronounced facade.

The site has a high degree of permeability, with organic lines of the various flows for pedestrians and cyclists through the urban farmlands and meadows. These anchor the hospital in the urban fabric of the town of Tienen, together with a restaurant, a nursery, a home care shop and the hospital reception at ground level.

The landscaping of this 5.5-hectare site includes the redevelopment of the urban farmland, the creation of meadows, the planting of an orchard and forest, interwoven with footpaths and cycle paths. A beautiful crown on this healing environment.