JSW Sanjeevani Multispeciality Hospital designed by SJK Architects combines the rigorous local design language with critical care needs

FEB 14, 2024 | By Aatish Nath
The JSW Sanjeevani Multispeciality Hospital emphasises the connection between nature, people and healing; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta
With a playful demeanour and coloured walls, the space exhibits an amicable quality with art by Baaya Design; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta
The hospital accommodates departments and diagnostic rooms on the first and second floor. The walls are finished in riverwashed ITA Gold limestone, coarse sand faced plaster and interiors in Birla white putty finish by JSW Paints; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

A hospital has to be optimised for functionality. But that doesn’t mean it requires white corridors and intimidating hermetic design. After all, research shows, views of nature, glare-free lighting and a natural colour palette, all speed up patient recovery.

At the JSW Sanjeevani Multispeciality Hospital in Dolvi, Shimul Javeri Kadri along with her team at SJK Architects has designed a 75-bed hospital that combines traditional materials with design features like continuous balconies and terraces that both shield against coastal monsoons and help to encourage east-west wind flow.

Traditional architectural forms inspired by the local climate, include balconies and pitched roofs designed to withstand heavy rains and summer heat; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

“A rural hospital has the potential to become a community hub. It must welcome people, create a sense of trust and an atmosphere of healing,” tells Shimul. This is also the first medical centre to come up on a 50 km stretch where no other hospital has existed before, making it a long-overdue addition to the village and surroundings.

So, it’s no surprise that the hospital’s design takes into account the needs of staff and patients, with emergency services, outpatient departments, diagnostic and ambulatory care on the ground floor, while the OTs and ICUs are on the first floor.

The building with natural ventilation features ITA Gold limestone finish in non-clinical corridors with wall surfaces of the interiors in Birla white putty finish by JSW Paints; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

The second floor is for the patient’s room. Taking environmental needs into account, the project uses AAC block masonry to reduce heating and cooling costs. It also features a sewage treatment plant, effluent treatment plant, solar-powered hot water plant and limits air-conditioning to critical clinical spaces, thereby saving 50 watts of energy per sq metre. Going forward, the second phase will see the hospital expand to 125 beds, with a nursing college also planned.

Continuous balconies and terraces with pavings by Shahabad stone are designed to shield against coastal monsoons and encourage east-west wind flows; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

Quotidianly, Sarika Shetty of SJK Architects notes, “The biggest challenge was to ensure that the desired false ceiling heights were achieved within all spaces in spite of the complexities of overlapping services in critical clinical spaces,” given that the hospital has the most complex MEPF (Mechanical, Engineering, Plumbing and Fire ) with infection control for isolated rooms and a complete system of MGPS (Medical Gas Pipeline System) integrated into every in-patient department and critical care space.

Gond artwork in the corridor; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

Technical requirements fulfilled, the building — light-filled and with natural ventilation — features ITA Gold limestone, serving as a pathway in all non-clinical corridors. Drawing on the region’s traditional art, the murals and artworks on wooden boards (for easy removal during maintenance) showcase Gond and Kalamkari art forms in waiting rooms and even consultation and maternity rooms.

Traditional Gond artworks by artist Hiraman and art facilitator Baaya Design are showcased in waiting rooms, consultation rooms and maternity rooms; Photography by Rajesh Vora and Niveditaa Gupta

Kadri notes, “The heavy rains in Alibaug, the heat and sun of the summer and the coastal winds have created a prototype of homes with balconies and pitched roofs.” Working with traditional architectural forms, the building is familiar to patients and their families. Outdoors, the slag filled site, has been planted with hardy, indigenous plants.

Ultimately, Shimul sums up, “Architecturally, we were keen to derive a language that took its cues from the local methods of building, based on wind and sun patterns. The connection between nature, people and healing was our primary focus in the design of this hospital.”

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