New and improved surroundings for psychiatric care in Denmark’s Capital Region are now ready as the first stage of Psychiatric Center Bispebjerg has opened. The project was designed by PLH Arkitekter in collaboration with Friis & Moltke and focuses on actively using architecture to create a healing environment for patients.
Henceforth, patients needing psychiatric care at Bispebjerg will be greeted by bright and open settings, tailored to ensure a good level of care, while providing a safe environment for patients, relatives and employees. The state-of-the-art building, which houses the emergency department, four wards, an ECT clinic and administration offices, has been designed with the patient in focus and offers space for activities both indoors and outdoors.
Patients are given bright and welcoming private rooms with bay windows, where they can sit and enjoy the surroundings. From all wards there is access to intimate atrium courtyards with sensory experiences while space has been created for individual and shared physical activities in the building’s activity room.
“At PLH Arkitekter, we have shown several times how architecture can make a positive difference to our well-being. That expertise has been our foundation in the tender competition and when we subsequently developed Psychiatric Center Bispebjerg, all in close dialogue with patients, relatives and employees.
I am very happy to see that the result is now a flexible setting for positive, stable treatment with the patient in focus, where the open, welcoming and stimulating environment supports a good process,” says Lars Toksvig, partner at PLH Arkitekter.
Architecture that benefits both patients and staff
The new and flexible environment will make a big difference to the patients, says lead therapist at the Psychiatric Center Copenhagen, Nana Stengade Troelsgaard: “The architecture here is something very special. It is both beautiful and has a great influence on the patients’ well-being.
For example, we have large glass facades out to the inner courtyards to draw light into the entire ward section, where there is also a big and easily accessible multi-room. We can offer many different activities, because the room layout invites you to do both physical exercises as well as stimulating immersion, creativity and tranquility.”
As part of the interior design, emphasis has been placed on lighting conditions, acoustics and colors that can positively influence the patients’ state of mind and behavior. At the same time, the open and clear environments make it easier for the staff to maintain an overview and prevent conflicts.
Photo © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas Bertelsen
Focus on atmosphere and integration with the local area
Based on patient requests and comments, PLH Arkitekter’s design creates a homely atmosphere with cozy common areas, so that patients and relatives can choose to join social activities when they like.
A key part of the overall plan for Psychiatric Center Bispebjerg has been to forge a seamless link with the local area. Focus has been on breaking down the large scale in order to fit the building into Ny Psychiatric Center Bispebjerg’s master plan and existing architecture by bringing the green landscape close up, in between the walled wings and out into the courtyards. Sourec by PLH Arkitekter.
Photo © Tomas BertelsenLocation: Bispebjerg, DenmarkArchitect: PLH ArkitekterCo-architect: Friis & MoltkeLandscape architect: LYTT ArchitectureEngineer: Søren Jensen A/SArea: 22,500 m2Private rooms: 200Expected completed: 2025Photographs: Tomas Bertelsen, Courtesy of PLH ArkitekterPhoto © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas BertelsenPhoto © Tomas Bertelsen