Ospedale Cattinara - "Cube" - Trieste


Trieste, Italy


Regione Autonoma FVG | ASU Giuliano Isontina


with Pooleng, SF+P | Contracting company: Rizzani De Eccher


Technical and economic feasibility study, detailed and final proposals


High-level biocontainment

Modularity and adaptability

Ospedale Cattinara “Cube”, Trieste
Ospedale Cattinara “Cube”, Trieste

The new “Covid Center” occupies the free area of the inner courtyard of Ospedale Cattinara in Trieste. It is a large volume, connected to the existing building and including 7 above-ground levels plus a technological floor on the rooftop and a basement level.
On the access level, the new building houses the emergency department, diagnostic imaging and endoscopy service, while the upper floors house the ordinary inpatient units (+1, +2, +3), sub-intensive and intensive care (+4, +5), the operating block and the outpatient surgery block (+6). The underground floor and the sixth floor house logistics and technological systems.

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All the inpatient units are equipped with an inlet filter in order to ensure maximum flexibility in case of admission of infected patients.
The project originates from the integration between Rizzani de Eccher’s highly prefabricated hospital model called “CUBE Hospital” and the traditional structure of the vertical elements on the north and south sides.
“CUBE Hospital” has been designed to respond to the demands for hospital and healthcare infrastructures resulting, above all, from the emergency scenarios generated by the changing epidemiological conditions and, in particular, the 2020 pandemic crisis caused by Covid-19.


Project area:
15.890 sqm
Bed capacity:
Project date:
2020 – Ongoing
Date of construction:
€ 40.215.000


- Modularity and adaptability
- Flexibility
- Standardisation
- Rapidity of construction
- Comfort

CUBE’s core consists of a parallelepiped module with a square plan arranged on a structural grid with a 7.5 by 7.5 metre mesh in which the substantial section has been specially designed to accommodate all the necessary distributed systems.
The peculiarity of the system is its modularity, which lends itself to maximum scalability: from the basic configuration, intended for triage and short-term intensive observation, it is possible to create a true hospital system sized to accommodate all the necessary diagnostic and treatment services as well as a maximum of 250 inpatient beds.

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The extreme flexibility of “CUBE Hospital” allows layouts to be quickly reconfigured according to the epidemiological and operational scenarios to be faced, without the need for additional works.
In Cattinara’s Covid Center, the integration between the two building systems was made evident in the façade through the use of different materials and colours: prefabricated panels with thermal and acoustic insulation, covered with fixed coloured aluminium sunshades, characterise the prefabricated part; walls made of autoclaved aerated concrete blocks with internal plasterboard lining characterise the part built with traditional technology.

Ospedale Cattinara “Cube”, Trieste