The challenge from Alder Hey’s Trust was to create ‘a hospital without precedent’. 

Through extensive consultation with the community, users and other parties, a design concept was developed called ‘the Hill in the Park’. This re-positions the hospital in the heart of the park, creating an integrated landscape solution that enhances hospital patient and visitor experience, as well as improving and growing the park.

The first impression of the hospital will be meadowtopped ‘hills’ rising out of the park, creating a soft and welcoming form, where the landscape of Springfield Park rolls seamlessly onto the ‘fingers’ of the building, taking the experience of parkland right to the wards of the hospital.

This enables patients to interact with the landscape from the external play decks located at the ends of each finger. Gardens, terraces and edible landscapes encourage patients to use the landscape as a healing resource.

Art, colour and storytelling will be used to create exciting external places between the sandstone rock faces of the building fingers. Careful selection of planting will add a further sensory experience, aiming to create a setting that is inspiring, therapeutic and energising.

“There will be views of the park from most windows and all children will see green space and nature from their rooms. The development will also give the local community a new and better park than they have now,” said David Powell, Programme Director of the Children’s Health Park.

Landscape architects: BDP Landsscape

Credits as supplied: BDP, WSP, Hoare Lea, Acorn Consortium (led by Laing O’Rourke).