Establishing the vision of a ‘Green hospital’ for the hospital planning development, Kotch has been involved to create more green areas for a dense concrete hospital and utilizing the possible waste space to create a better healing environment. The healthy environment of the hospital is considered a crucial component of the healing process. The planning and design provide physical spaces for the users to reconnect with nature. The key to shaping the healthy behavior and well-being of patients, families, visitors, and their staff.
The Ecotherapy concept is applied to enhance the therapeutic experience. The proved evidence of better recovery in physical sickness with the touch of natural elements. Sunlight, plant aroma, and the soothing green view can increase the positive effect on the mental and physical health of visitors. This healing garden design brings a sense of peace, serenity, and healing experience through landscape architecture design.
“It is the best place for refuge from the chaotic and banality in the government hospital. The design intention is to easily access for universal users, comforting escape from the stress, and improve an overall sense of wellbeing and emotional hopefulness. It is the outdoor safe space that hardly finds in the healthcare environment, nowadays.” said Kotchakorn, the lead design and construction management for this project. There are 14 healing activities on this greenroom that benefit five therapeutic factors for well-being, cognition, emotion, physical, communication and social relation.
The participatory process in this garden was the flower wall painting on the planter. All the flower illustrations in this garden are hand painter by the hospital staffs, the Ramathibodhi water-colour club, volunteers and students. There are 10 species of flowers that is a symbol of the Mahidol University (the owner of the hospital) and the nine flowers that name after Her Royal Highness Princess Sirindhorn
“A circle is a universal symbol of holistic. It is also the geometry that has no angle, smooth and soothing. These gesture characters are implemented in our garden experience to make this concrete roof as safe and therapeutic space. It is a great coincidence from the existing structure of helicopter pad as well.”
The visitors can observe the beauty of nature and walk through a path of visually and fragrant plants provide sensory benefits with their forms and colors, scents and textures which turn a garden into a place of healing and inspiration. People may walk in the shade under the violet pergola tunnel which leads to a big field of green grass that can contain 200 people.
A recycle wall is one of the highlights of the healing garden, saline bags, the medical waste which is clean and free of contamination is most widely used in the hospital. The waste reduction has been concerned, over 700 saline bags switch from disposable to recyclable containers for planting to create a tree wall. Nearby the healing garden is solar panels area which also installed for reducing the electricity bills of the Ramathibodi hospital.
Some activities in the healing garden that also reinforce physical therapy even mild exercise such as the gravel path for balancing rehabilitation therapy walking practice along with the Braille handrails for blind people and visually impaired. Patients, caregivers, families, staffs, and visitors can grow vegetable in planting area which also produces safe and nutritious vegetables. Planting offers a variety of both physical and mental health benefits including reducing the risk of heart disease and other life-threatening diseases. Kid’s zone, elderly zone, and outdoor circular amphitheater are designed to improve patients and visitors’ mental health.
The concept of this healing garden on the green roof is not only benefited the patients and their staff but also benefit the good example of green architecture to the city. The design focuses on sustainability and incorporates solar cell, zero waste management, zero stormwater discharge and heat reduction to the beneath the building.
“Through my experience, this project is one of the most difficult projects, not in term of design but the construction management. The challenging aspect was difficulties when we have to carry everything up on the rooftop with one elevator and that the hospital operates 24 hours. However, I feel all this hardship is definitely worth because it is the first showcase to show society that outdoor space, is so important to our healthy environment. And, I do hope for every hospital in Thailand to be concern about this as health promotion in action.” Said Kotchakorn, talking about her most recent project with a smile.
Client: Ramathibodi Foundation
Landscape Architectural Design: LANDPROCESS
Prime Contractor: Work Engineering and Construction Co., Ltd
Supplier: Mark Power Sign Co., Ltd / Talent Design Ltd./ Zillion Innovation
POWERPLUS ENGINEERING AND CONSULTANTS CO., LTD.
Painting: APTU Camp
Lighting: Lighting & Equipment PCL.
Construction Supporter: RFS Co., Ltd.