Case Study – New Stobhill Hospital

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This world beating little hospital is the latest in a series of successful innovations for Glasgow’s Stobhill. The new generation Ambulatory Care and Diagnostics (ACAD) facility, in 2010, became the first Scottish hospital to win ‘world’s best small hospital’. More importantly, it has won the affection of its patients.

It’s a stunning hospital…There is no reason why patients shouldn’t feel positive when they go there. It’s not dark or dingy. It is lovely and light. All hospitals should be designed like the Stobhill site in the future

Margaret Watt, Scottish Patients Association on her visit to New Stobhill Hospital

The significant time spent with clinical groups developed a collaborative spirit around the project and a clarity of vision. The building had to process people quickly and efficiently and to do so it had to be organised around the patient experience; reducing waiting times by reducing the time taken to transfer between different areas of the facility, and ensuring that patients arrive in the right place at the right time with the minimum levels of stress and anxiety. This may sound quite clinical and cold; but the client focussing so entirely on the experience of being a patient required their architect to respond to that challenge with a design that recognised human needs.

The entrance feeds directly into a central atrium which then provides immediate access to the outpatient clinics, day surgery and diagnostics. The clinical accommodation is split into two types. Highly serviced areas such as surgery and radiotherapy are placed in a deep-plan 4 storey block to the north of the atrium. At upper levels, courtyards are cut out of this block as the use becomes less intensive. Outpatient consulting areas, and the MIU, are in a 3 storey block to the south; the smaller scale cellular accommodation being arranged in a series of narrow plan ‘loops’ around courtyards giving daylight and some views. A raised bank to the south of the facility gives direct, and discrete, access to the MIU whilst providing a visual buffer to the adjacent mental health unit. The clarity and humanity of this diagram is in stark contrast to many similar scale hospitals.

About A&DS Case Studies

Our case studies series shows the benefits of good design in Scotland’s built environment. We highlight the processes behind our built environment as well as the finished result, to grow our collective understanding of good design practice. More of our case studies are available here. We want to grow this resource as much as we can. So if you have a question or comment about our Case Studies series, email us at

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