Renowned architect Shigeru Ban has announced a groundbreaking collaboration with the municipality of Lviv to design a remarkable expansion for the Lviv Hospital. As the largest hospital in Ukraine, Lviv Hospital has witnessed a surge in patient numbers since the onset of the war, making enhancing the institution’s capacity imperative. Shigeru Ban’s visionary proposal uses cross-laminated wood and traditional wooden construction techniques to create a safe and nurturing environment for healing and recovery.
Lviv Hospital’s New Expansion
The architect unveiled his ambitious Lviv Hospital expansion project during a presentation at the prestigious Lviv Urban Forum. The plan’s centerpiece involves the construction of a new surgical building inspired by the First Medical Territorial Association, which represents Shigeru Ban’s latest endeavor to address the aftermath of war.
Before this initiative, the architect had already collaborated with the Voluntary Architects’ Network in various participatory projects dedicated to providing suitable living conditions for internally displaced individuals by deploying a paper partition system (PPS) for emergency shelters.
The need for a new surgical building has become evident to expand medical care services for those impacted by the war. The proposed wing will boast an impressive area of approximately 25 thousand square meters, accommodating various crucial departments. Among them are specialized units for cardiac surgery, intensive care, liver, kidney, and lung transplantation, an oncology department, state-of-the-art operating units, and a comprehensive training center.
Central to the proposed structure is the innovative use of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT), an engineered wood created by laminating thin layers of solid lumber to form sturdy panels capable of withstanding significant structural loads.
Incorporating hardwood dowels and wood-to-wood joints ensures seamless connections between the elements, reinforcing the hospital’s structural integrity. Furthermore, the utilization of CLT significantly reduces carbon emissions associated with construction. The prefabricated panels offer additional advantages, facilitating rapid and efficient construction and minimizing labor requirements and on-site disruptions.
In addition to the groundbreaking Lviv Hospital’s proposal and the successful deployment of the paper partition systems (PPS) for emergency shelters, Shigeru Ban has developed the innovative Styrofoam Housing System (SHS). This easily deployable modular construction method is versatile and can serve multiple purposes.
A remarkable testament to its potential was witnessed in Lviv, where a prototype of the SHS was constructed in a temporary housing complex housing approximately 1,300 internally displaced individuals. These SHS units will soon transform into classrooms, allowing children to learn music and drawing.
Shigeru Ban’s dedication to humanitarian causes and architectural innovation has inspired the architectural community. As the war-generated humanitarian crisis continues, they have rallied to support and alleviate the suffering of those affected. Additionally, their efforts aim to safeguard Ukraine’s rich cultural heritage and contribute significantly to its reconstruction endeavors.
In conclusion, the collaboration between Shigeru Ban and the municipality of Lviv represents a pivotal step towards the expansion and enhancement of Lviv Hospital. Adopting cross-laminated wood and traditional construction techniques promises to create a healing haven for patients. Through his inventive solutions and commitment to humanitarian causes, Shigeru Ban has undoubtedly left an indelible mark on Lviv’s landscape, fostering hope and healing in the face of adversity.