Completed at whirlwind pace: Covid19 clinic in Berlin
Employer: Land Berlin, Senatsverwaltung für Gesundheit, Pflege und Gleichstellung
Client: Messer Berlin
Architecture: Heinle, Wischer und Partner, Freie Architekten
Project leader: Albrecht Broemme, Bettina Hufe
Location: Berlin (DE)
The emergency clinic had to be set up within a matter of weeks, yet a detailed spatial programme was not available at the beginning of the construction phase and there was no overview of constructions tasks in terms of rooms, purposes, fittings and fixtures. Planning and coordination could not be performed in a linear fashion as usual but had to be developed and implemented concurrently to tendering, procurement and construction work. “This involved an unprecedented degree of dynamism – any project after this will feel like slow motion”, states site manager Fabian Scharf.
The planners took trade fair and event construction as a guideline for converting the 11,690-square-metre exhibition hall into a care facility. The 488 treatment places are divided into clusters of 16 to 24 beds each, whereby their portable equipment can be adjusted to individual medical and nursing requirements and adapted for further sites. Supply lines for medical systems, ventilation and sanitary installations lead along overhead crossbeams to the respective clusters, making it possible to ensure sufficient headroom for the areas below and enabling concurrent performance of different construction activities.
Extensive elements that can easily be recognized at a great distance were developed for the orientation system, while flooring in differing colours clearly demarcates the general care and respiratory units.
Changing rooms, offices and respite rooms for clinical personnel are contained in a three-storey modular structure that was erected outside the exhibition hall. Specialist staff enter the infectious areas in the hall’s interior through air locks, plus the routes they take do not cross those of patients.
In this way a construction project that the planners and client hope will never be needed was completed at whirlwind pace. Over 90 percent of the deployed materials are reusable; medical furnishings, movable supply units, respirators and the CT scanner are to be distributed among other clinics after the pandemic, while walling from exhibition suppliers, crossbeams and other furniture have simply been leased and can be set up again elsewhere.