A new £38m state-of-the-art Emergency Department in the centre of a congested hospital estate with numerous complex interfaces with the surrounding buildings and infrastructure.
This completely new £38m Accident and Emergency Department (AED) replaced the ageing emergency department, that had served the people of Wolverhampton for a number of years, on the same NHS estate as the New Cross hospital in Wolverhampton. The new AED co-locates all the urgent care facilities under one roof, including dedicated radiology, X-ray facilities, clinical decisions unit, facilities for urgent outpatient and an urgent care centre. The new building considerably larger than the previous emergency department, making it one of the important sources of emergency care in the West Midlands, with world-class facilities that help staff provide high quality, safe care across the region.
Ramboll provided civil, structural, and geo-environmental engineering services, as well as acoustic consultancy and specialist laser aided modelling. Critically construction of the new building would have to take place while the New Cross hospital continued to deliver a business-as-usual service, placing a premium on minimising impact across the site.
Ramboll collaborated with the design team and client to gain a detailed understanding of both the client brief and the proposed site. We took a lead role in unlocking the site constraints and determining how the new facility would interact with the surrounding buildings. The nature of the site created particular challenges. It sits on a pronounced slope and had multiple adjacencies where the new facility needed to link to existing buildings. We also had to factor in a major underground service tunnel housing numerous critical site wide services, effectively splitting the site into two.
The initial brief positioned the building directly over this vital underground service corridor. Our study concluded this location would adversely impact on the functionality of the new building, resulting in significant risks to the critical services supplying the estate during the construction activities. Armed with a comprehensive assessment, we convinced the client that better solutions were available, by moving the proposed building to a revised location immediately adjacent to the service corridor. Our assessment was undertaken by a rigorous and methodical desk based approach, based on intrusive surveys. The assessment defined the most effective location and level of the facility.
We used latest laser scanning techniques as part of the survey process, converting this information into our structural Revit model. This provided us with highly accurate information relating to the existing buildings and site infrastructure. As a result of this approach we removed a significant level of risk from the construction process, and the building was successfully connected to the existing buildings and surrounding infrastructure with minimum disruption. The principal design team members used Revit to present their information. This approach meant we brought all the information together in one model, aiding the clear communication of the design and mitigating clashes between disciplines.