Queen Elizabeth University Hospital Campus (Glasgow, Scotland), which opened to patients in July 2015, brings together Queen Elizabeth University Hospital and the Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow, making it one of Europe’s largest and most advanced medical campuses.

The 1.8 million-square-foot project brings together services previously delivered at four separate hospitals into a single complex. Construction started on the $1.2 billion project in November 2010 and wrapped up in January 2015 with a 1,109-bed acute care hospital and a 259-bed children’s hospital.

The buildings are architecturally expressed as a “vessel” (children’s hospital), “dock” (adult hospital podium), and “beacon” (adult ward tower) and surrounded by 7.4 acres of landscaped parkland. The development’s scale and proportions, complemented by carefully selected materials, a palette of colors based on DNA strands, and extensive use of natural light, combine to create a non-institutional healing environment.

The social heart of the acute hospital is a 12-story atrium incorporating generous seating areas, a café, restaurant, retail outlets, exhibition space, and a multifaith sanctuary. Eight floors arranged around the atrium house 32 nursing units, including specialist wards, accommodating externally facing en-suite private bedrooms configured to optimize observation while allowing each unit to flex in response to demand.

Clinical services include 29 OR theaters, an intensive therapy unit (ITU), diagnostic and imaging facilities, day services (including a medical day unit, dialysis unit, and endoscopy unit), and one of Scotland’s largest emergency departments.

The co-located children’s hospital houses a dedicated emergency department, 9 OR theaters, and a range of specialist pediatric services. The science-inspired environment includes state-of-the-art distraction technologies, Radio Lollipop, and a medi-cinema, providing off-ward respite and entertainment for patients and families.

Artwork, textures, and lighting are used to enliven the interior spaces and aid in wayfinding, with particular emphasis on the use of colors proven to have calming or uplifting effects.

Sustainability was integral to the design with environmental features carefully integrated to ensure achievement of low carbon emission targets, resulting in a BREEAM Excellent rating.

On a community scale, the development has revitalized an area formerly associated with shipbuilding, while the sites vacated through the consolidation process have facilitated urban regeneration and revenue generation opportunities for Glasgow University and the city itself. 

The project was designed by architecture firm IBI Group (Glasgow, Scotland) and constructed by Brookfield Multiplex (Sydney) in collaboration with NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde Board (Glasgow).