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Hopkins Architects wins competition to re-clad St Thomas' Hospital east wing

London SE1 website team

Hopkins Architects and ISG have won the competition for the re-cladding of a 13-storey tower at St Thomas' Hospital, but the start of work has been delayed by 12 months as a cash-saving measure.

St Thomas' Hospital east wing
The east wing as it is now.
Hopkins Architects wins competition to re-clad St Thomas' Hospital east wing
The winning design concept

The design competition was launched earlier this year by the Royal Institute of British Architects on behalf of Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.

Architects and contractors were required to collaborate from day one, and the competition followed a multi-stage process. At the final stage teams were invited to come up with design concepts for the re-cladding of the building that would improve its appearance and energy efficiency.

The Hopkins/ISG winning design is a single skin of glass, with a timber mullion and stainless steel external pressure cap, which creates a thermal buffer zone and two new triangular atria.

The judges thought this to be a thorough and well thought through proposal with the potential to achieve a significant transformation in the image of the hospital, both externally and internally with generous atria spaces which would enhance the experience for patients and staff.

Hopkins Architects also designed the adjacent Evelina Children's Hospital which has just celebrated its fifth anniversary.

"The winning team has developed a proposal which is intelligent, stylish, appropriate and convincing at all levels from its construction strategy to its approach to sustainability," says RIBA adviser and jury panel member David Henderson.

"It will transform not just the east wing but the whole surrounding environment."

The shortlisted designs were exhibited at both Guy's Hospital and St Thomas' Hospital in August.

"We recognised that re-cladding a building that will be fully occupied in the centre of one of London's largest teaching hospital close to the Houses of Parliament and Lambeth Palace was going to be difficult," says Alastair Gourlay, programme director for Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.

"The quality of the design submissions was beyond our expectations and our team really enjoyed the time we had with each of the competitors.

"The winning design is a stunning response to the brief and was the most popular in the public consultation.

"It will be a great asset for St Thomas' Hospital that will significantly enhance the building for staff and patients alike."

However, a paper tabled for this month's meeting of the trusts' board of directors reveals that the start of the re-cladding project has been delayed by 12 months as a money-saving measure.

The other teams on the shortlist were Allford Hall Monaghan Morris/Galliford Try, David Morley Architects/Laing O'Rourke Construction, Denton Corker Marshall/Josef Gartner & Co, Grimshaw/Geoffrey Osborne and Penoyre & Prasad/BAM Construction.

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