Zeno, Knokke, Belgium

AZ Zeno Knokke is a brand-new hospital in Knokke destined to replace the two existing campuses. This was imposed by the government subsidizing the complex, but was also necessary because the campus on the Graaf Jansdijk in Knokke-Heist was facing various limitations, such as accessibility, parking facilities and lack of space for expansion. At the new location, the hospital covers an area of 44,000 m², spread over 5 levels accommodating 324 beds. The cost of the new building is between 215 and 230 million euros.


Ceci n’est pas un hôpital – the reference to Magritte underscores the idea that this should be a hospital that does not feel like a hospital, but rather like a reassuring and open state-of-the-art care environment that is inspiring, filled with light, nature, warmth and imagination. The new hospital seems to float above the landscape and is dominated by light and nature. The designers managed to combine high-tech care with a general sense of well-being and freedom of movement for patients, staff and visitors alike. The link between indoors and outdoors, between care facilities and public spaces is virtually seamless, resulting in an inviting and inspiring environment. The architecture seems to be part of the healing process. The designers AA Prog Architects, B2AI and Boeckx architecten & engineering teamed up with Ingenium consultancy firm and installers EEG group and ENGIE to bring their idea to fruition.


For the lighting plan, Modular studied the concept in depth, looking for the most appropriate solution in consultation with the parties involved. The core values were explored during those discussions, such as the emphasis on nature and light, high-tech care, a sense of well-being and the seamless transition between inside and outside spaces and between different areas. How could we create a lighting plan that would strengthen the architectural concept?


Collaborating with Modular created value in a variety of aspects, whether at architectural level, in terms of construction efficiency and energy-saving solutions, and in the patient's actual perception of the lighting plan. The design was discussed right from the start with the architect, at the drawing board. The horizontal lines that are characteristic of the architecture are accentuated by the long lighting lines. In the corridors, some of which have a length of at least 60 metres, the SLD50 profile is integrated as a continuous lighting line. It was decided to position them asymmetrically for the patient's well-being. Indeed, this ensures that the recumbent patient on a bed is not unpleasantly dazzled as he or she is being moved along the corridors. The full integration of lighting supports the architecture, creating a calming image everywhere in the complex. For example, our light fixtures have a finish in white structure, which seamlessly matches the finishing of the ceilings and walls in the project. The strong concept was already laid down in 2012 in the form of traditional tube lighting. Modular converted the plan to LED lighting. It was not enough to replace TL with LED, however. By implementing smart switching, involving partly short fixtures and partly pre-dimmable units in the longer profiles, power consumption especially was reduced. A key added value for the client. For the sake of efficiency and aesthetics, Modular explored with the installer ways to integrate the necessary emergency lighting in the stairwells into the SLD50 profiles already planned in these spaces. As part of the specific project approach, the profiles were delivered ready for installation on the building site. Packaging material was minimized out of sustainability concerns, which meant time savings on site.


Delivery began in spring 2017 and the project is nearing completion. Under Project Care, we will begin our evaluation to transpose our experience into improvements for our next customers. More pictures will follow. The pictures you see are the ones from the work in progress.

Project info

AA Prog Architects, B2AI and Boeckx architecten & engineering