The new Redemption Hospital in Caldwell Liberia is designed to avert future epidemics and service the communities medical needs, even when electricity is unreliable. Phase 1, currently under construction, is a two story, 155-bed facility encompassing comprehensive pediatric and maternity services. It will make use of innovative ventilation strategies in the form of solar chimneys to minimize energy use, ensure effective infection control, and reduce operational costs. Transsolar provided climate design for the project and focused on the natural ventilation, comfort and daylighting of the wards.
The primary infection control strategy uses natural ventilation and solar chimneys to cycle the air inside the hospital with clean air twelve times per hour. The architecture achieves this through cross ventilation from the windows and breeze blocks, and is supported by twelve solar chimneys that heat up and pull contaminated air out of the ward spaces. All of the waiting spaces in the hospital are on the exterior in order to reduce transmission of airborne infection in waiting spaces. Prevailing wind patterns informed the placement of the hospital's naturally-ventilated and mechanically-ventilated spaces. Two courtyards within the hospital capture the prevailing winds from the southwest, naturally-ventilating clinical spaces and waiting spaces.
The solar chimneys also ensure patient comfort through cooling the wards with fresh air from the microclimate created by our planted courtyards and the adjacent wetland. Air within the wards is also cleaned by Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) fixtures. Ceiling fans pull air upwards, where it is decontaminated by the UVGI fixtures.
All spaces are shaded by combinations of vertical and horizontal architectural elements that were carefully optimized both to block solar gain and maximize daylight in the spaces so that electric lighting was not required during the day.