The New QEII Hospital is one of a new generation of NHS local hospitals aimed at keeping key hospital functions close to communities while moving specialist acute and in-patient care to fewer larger centres.
The design seeks to respond to the Garden City context of Welwyn through its integration of gardens and building, its use of materials − timber, render, glass and hung tiles − and its pitched roof line. The external landscaping flows under the generous colonnaded entrance, through the foyer and into the large courtyard garden, creating a sense of openness upon arrival.
All the waiting areas are adjacent to the central courtyard garden, providing natural light and views out. The building is designed to high environmental and energy-efficiency standards and will achieve BREEAM Excellent.
Tracy Byrne, one of the nurse practitioners who works in the Urgent Care Centre said: “It’s an exciting start for the New QEII. The building has a great open feeling with natural light, which is fantastic and will really help patient care.”
Dr Asha Herbert on her first shift at the hospital said: “It’s a lovely open, airy, fresh department which I’m sure staff and patients will benefit from.”