The new psychiatric hospital in Vestfold

New psychiatric hospital opened

In mid-May the new 12 000 m2 psychiatric hospital in Vestfold in Norway was opened.

25. June 2019

“The department of psychiatry is looking forward to starting using the new buildings, which are absolutely fantastic. This is a big step forward for psychiatric care in Vestfold”, says Tom Einertsen, Vestfold Hospital Trust’s project director.

“The objective has been to create a pleasant place for patients, families and staff. This project has focused on ensuring that the architecture supports the patients on their journey from sickness to health, and on creating surroundings that will motivate and inspire patients during their recovery process”, says Morten Staubo, the CURA alliance’s lead architect.

The Vestfold Hospital, the CURA alliance and Skanska with its specialist sub-contractors have developed the ward using the collaborative approach known as Integrated Project Delivery (IPD). In this kind of project, the outcome determines the success of all of the parties, and the collaboration between the parties is much deeper than in other kinds of projects.

Focus on safety and wellbeing

On Thursday, 9 May the new facilities were handed over to the Vestfold Hospital. They consist of a building with offices and outpatient services and a building with an inpatient ward designed to meet the needs of a total of 50 patients. The building has a therapeutic garden, a roof garden for geriatric psychiatry and an open atrium for the patients. The inpatient ward is a high-security building with strict rules on patient safety and wellbeing.

“The design of the building has been guided by the needs of users. We have been in continuous dialogue with patients and staff to make sure that it has been done in the best possible way. The patients are in a very challenging situation, where it is important for them to interact and socialise in a safe environment. The day-to-day work of the staff is challenging, and it’s important to lay the foundations for safety, good procedures and wellbeing”, says Staubo.

Good cooperation

The new buildings for psychiatric care services are part of a bigger 45,000 m2 development at the Vestfold Hospital. Construction started in 2017, and the whole project is due for completion in 2021, including a new building for physical health care with a new emergency ward.

“The priorities for this project have included early involvement of all of the parties and sharing information. Having all of the parties taking responsibility and working towards a common goal has worked really well”, says Hans Ole Haugen, the head of the CURA alliance.

The CURA alliance, which is a partnership between Bølgeblikk Arkitekter, LINK Arkitektur, Erichsen & Horgen and Multiconsult, is responsible for the conceptual and detailed design, as well as construction supervision. The main contractor Skanska is supported by the specialist subcontractors Assemblin AS (plumbing), Haaland Klima AS (ventilation) and Bravida Norge AS (electrical work).

“Such a big project requires all of the players with their complementary skill sets to come together and cooperate successfully, and there needs to be a joint focus on producing good results that meet the needs of the customer and future users. The whole project group has shared premises in order to facilitate decision-making procedures, and we have used digital tools and models extensively in order to improve and streamline project execution. Skanska’s vision is ‘We build for a better society’, and we feel honoured and proud to have been given the opportunity to help enable forward-looking, modern psychiatric care services for the local population”, says Hans-Thomas Gaarder, Skanska’s project director.

Quick facts about the project:

  • The Vestfold Hospital, the CURA alliance and Skanska, with its specialist sub-contractors, are delivering the project using the Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) methodology.
  • IPD is a form of collaboration developed to improve efficiency and reduce conflicts in the construction industry. The most important principles include early involvement of all parties, as well as sharing risks and joint decision-making.
  • The CURA alliance, which is a partnership between Bølgeblikk Arkitekter, LINK Arkitektur, Erichsen & Horgen and Multiconsult, is responsible for the conceptual and detailed design, as well as construction supervision.
  • Skanska’s specialist sub-contractors Assemblin, Haaland Klima and Bravida have also formed part of the IPD group right from the start of the project.