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Klein Architects complete landmark Red Zone building

Media release
27 February 2014

Klein Architects complete landmark Red Zone building

Specialist health architectural firm, Klein have played a vital part in the new $55m Forté Hospital that was recently opened by Prime Minister John Key.
Located in the heart of Christchurch’s Red Zone area, the building marks a significant and historic milestone as the first significant new building to be completed in the red zone since the 2011 earthquake. 

The state-of-the-art surgical facility situated on Peterborough Street replaces the Oxford Clinic building that incurred significant earthquake damage and was later demolished in 2012.

As a result of their award winning work within the New Zealand health sector, Klein Architects were commissioned in 2012 by Forte Health to complete the specialist interior fit-out working with the base-build architects Wilson and Hill.  “An important part of the client brief was to create an interior that was both environmentally sound and sustainable so we have incorporated a whole raft of initiatives aimed at making it as energy efficient as possible, says Melanie Mason, lead architect for the project. “The projects sustainable design has resulted in a 4 Green Star Design rating by the New Zealand Green Building Council. This is a real honour as it’s the first time this award has been given to a medical facility in New Zealand.”

“The key challenge for us was the speed of the project. Construction of the building commenced while we were still finishing design of the fitout. Design was completed in just eight months and from start to finish the complex took only 18 months to construct, which is a remarkable feat.” 

The buildings roll call of eco credentials include solar power, smart lighting system, heat recovery air conditioning system, waste reduction and a specialist built in energy optimising building management system.

Unlike similar medical buildings the architects have incorporated an atrium in an attempt to allow natural light to permeate into areas of the building that would normally be forced to rely on artificial light. This clever design tactic has allowed light to flood into the four operating theatres and 12 bed recovery areas helping to make these areas much more pleasant environments. The overall interior has been carefully crafted around the specialist needs of patients and staff.

Dorothy Paton, Forté Health’s General Manager says the specialists and stakeholders are thrilled with the environment that has been created for patients, visitors and staff.  “The building has been designed by healthcare professionals, which has provided the best outcome for all. We have had some amazing feedback about the light, room flow and design of the building. Klein Architects proved to be an excellent design partner.” 

As New Zealand’s leading specialists within the health field, the recent completion of the Forté Hospital follows on from other major projects such as the new five storey clinical services building at Middlemore Hospital in South Auckland for Counties Manukau DHB. This $140m, 30,000m development sees the creation of 14 operating theatres, a 43 bed recovery suite and a 42 bed assessment and planning unit.  Klein continues their work in Christchurch leading the masterplanning and health design of the major redevelopment of the Burwood Health Campus which is now under construction.


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