Conversion and renovation
The existing building of the Geriatric Clinic was built in 1980 by Bärlocher and Unger as an addition or completion to the Bürgerspital ensemble from the 19th and 20th centuries and has not been significantly renovated or refurbished since then.
A selective process was carried out in 2011 and 2012 to find a redevelopment and extension option for the geriatric clinic.
The original structure of the existing building was supplemented by a spatial layer on the entire north side, which preserves the basic urban figure of the building and maintains the linear termination of the Bürgerspital ensemble.
The result is the rational typology of a three-bundle building in which the additional space programme is optimally interlocked with the existing building in operational terms.
Geriatrics treats older patients who are often restricted in their everyday life by several illnesses and who are dependent on support or assistance in their everyday life over and above the physical complaints.
A holistic approach is pursued which, in addition to therapeutic and medical aspects, also takes into account social, functional and psychological needs - with the aim of enabling the patient to lead as independent a life as possible after their stay in hospital.
With advancing age many people perceive changes in their life situation as frightening if not threatening.
In the case of a hospital stay one is torn away from one's familiar surroundings and is forced to live with a stranger in a confined space. Everyday life with its habits is suspended; in addition to pain and discomfort one is confronted with the permanent disturbance of one's own private and intimate sphere.
The design of the room and the arrangement of the bed with the wardrobes seems even important here, so the patient can find peace and relaxation and perceive the room as a protective cocoon.
The bed rooms of the newly added room layer are wider and less deep than usual. They are generously dimensioned and have a large window across the entire width of the room.
The distance between the patients is large, the space in between becomes a common room that can also be used as a dining area.
The position of the beds and the low parapet height of the façade allow an unobstructed view to the outside.
2017 - 2020
Extension, conversion and renovation of the inpatient ward, therapy and administration rooms and cafeteria
Local citizens' municipality of St. Gallen
Planning and execution Conversion and renovation
Silvia Gmür Reto Gmür Architects
General planning team:
Silvia Gmür Reto Gmür Architects, Basel
Walter Dietsche Construction Management AG, Chur
Hans Kolbeck, Mehrdad Safa
Elisa Levi Minzi, Joachim Pfeffinger, Walter Gloor, Linda Gmür, Mauro Mariani