Construction Management: A.planir, Echallens
Wood Engineer: Pirmin Jung, Rain
Structural Engineer: 3demArch, Crissier
Building Physicist: Pirmin Jung, Rain
Acoustic Engineer: Pirmin Jung, Rain
Engineer Hvpe: Amstein+Walthert, Lausanne
Text description provided by the architects. The University Care and Rehabilitation Centre Sylvana (CUTR) occupies a former sanatorium built in 1913 in Epalinges, a municipality situated above the City of Lausanne, on an exceptional site at the edge of the woods overlooking the entire Lake Geneva region.
To satisfy the growing demand for post-hospital rehabilitation beds, the roof optimization created space for two floors for beds and care programs by replacing the attic and roof-tree of the 1950s. Technical and size-related constraints were integrated into an organic form that makes use of roof ridges and surfaces, thus reinterpreting the shape of the former sanatorium by seeking to make it blend in with the nearby treeline.
This strong aspiration to integration resulted in the choice of copper-coated bituminous roofing membranes, which would ultimately take on the hues of the surrounding treescape. The new roof construction was prefabricated and largely made of wood, allowing for a limitation of additional load, while thanks to the speed of the realization, the construction deadline could be adhered to without any interruption of hospital operations. 29 rehabilitation beds in 19 rooms distributed on the two newly added floors increased the number of beds at CUTR Sylvana to 95.
Besides these new beds, rooms were created for various care programs and facilities for ergotherapy and physiotherapy, as well as for the hospital staff, doctors, and nurses, who run this competence and care center for geriatric rehabilitation. In analogy with the room organization principle of the lower floors, the various programs of the two newly added floors are clustered around a generously proportioned communal room, which was conceived of as a kind of indoor street where people can simply stroll around or engage in rehabilitation activities and exercise.
This room is a meeting place for patients and personnel and provides a high-quality point of reference as an alternative to the classic corridor/room division. Its form automatically resulted from the organization of the variously dimensioned rooms and the arrangement of the different rooms and other facilities, which is reflected in a rich and varied spatiality. On the topmost floor, this area is even more spacious thanks to the flow and specific shape of the roof.