WAF 2019 Finalist: National University Centre for Oral Health Singapore (NUCOHS)

July 11, 2019



Nikky Rivera

Having garnered platinum distinction from the CA Green Mark Award for Buildings and receiving high commendation by the European Healthcare Design Awards, it is no surprise to see the National University Centre for Oral Health Singapore (NUCOHS) in the World Architecture Festival 2019 Health category shortlist.

Completed just this year, this outstanding project is a collaboration of B+H with A61. The primary challenge as per B+H is to create a space that acts as a meeting point for students, academics, visitors of the existing property, while the construction of which will not be an obstruction on the operations and activities of the campus.

Located at the eastern entryway to the National University of Singapore (NUS), NUCOHS’s design manifests the NUS Faculty of Dentistry’s mission and vision as a “dental institution of international distinction…improving oral health through academic excellence, high impact research, and quality clinical service”. NUCOHS will serve as the hinge of the existing campus joining the existing campus, the academic and medical spaces, by providing access and linkage to all the disciplines in the masterplan. The project is comprised of several networks of covered pathways and bridges to link the campus to the nearest public transportation hub for the convenience of its users.

With its exceptional design, it is already considered as a landmark in its area – from its distinguished V-shaped form extending to the landscape terraces up to its courtyard. Its landscape strategy is a signature mark of most Singaporean architects when designing a building. Let alone the façade that gives the structure a prominent identity with its extensive use of glass and louvers to maximize daylight while moderating solar gain. Interior spaces with high ceilings and large windows give a proper allowance for natural light to pass through the building. There is just the right opportunity for its users to connect with nature.

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Another smart innovation about this structure is that is easily adapted to changing program requirements without compromising functionality by the standardization of the floor plates and principal elements as a key feature of vigorous building infrastructure.

Its design is a cooperation between treating and teaching. Program areas are distributed to each floor with regards to its traffic volumes and functional proximities, and most importantly to encourage collaboration among its core users – the students and the medical practitioners.

Images courtesy of WAF

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