Hospital AZ Zeno

Wind study and smoke distribution in parking garage

B2Ai is a multidisciplinary architecture group with design studios in Brussels, Ghent, Roeselaere and Lille. For their designs, B2Ai analyses how people experience a space based on architectural, sociological and economic aspects. An example of this approach is the new built of the hospital AZ Zeno Knokke-Heist.

The hospital is located near the Belgian coast, in open terrain and on a raised level. The adjacent parking garage is placed in a recess, is partially enclosed by a roof and thus lies concealed in the landscape. This reinforces a specific quality to the experience of the space.

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This combination also creates a considerable risk for wind conditions around the new built that can be perceived as uncomfortable, inconvenient or dangerous. Moreover the ventilation of the parking garage must be sufficient to ensure the possibility for safe evacuation or repressive action from the fire brigade. B2Ai asked Actifow to give insight in both aspects in separate studies.

A wind study was performed to give insight in the local wind climate around the hospital. The first step lead to recommendations to improve the level of wind comfort such as introducing additional green (trees and bushes) to reduce wind speeds. Areas of interest were the entrances and the accessible gardens. The impact of these alterations was visualized in new simulations.

The study regarding the removal of heat and smoke gave insight in the conditions in the parking garage during fire in multiple cars. An analysis was made whether the smoke concentration and air temperature during this period were below legal thresholds to ensure safe evacuation of visitors and repressive action of the fire brigade.

Actiflow has used these diverse simulations to give insight in the future level of comfort and safety.