The Trust had a requirement to expand their current ward facilities in order to cater for a larger patient intake. The hospital first opened its doors in 2001 and is one of the largest hospitals in the UK in terms of in-patient capacity.
MTX produced a design for a 3 storey building matching the exterior of the existing hospital by utilising curtain walling and brick slip. It connects into the current wards via linkway corridors and a gradual slope was introduced to provide a seamless flow between departments.
Working alongside our dedicated architectural team, we ensured that the design was co-ordinated with the off-site structure and M&E designers to limit the on-site works. The solution was completely bespoke and tailored to the exact needs of the Trust and end users, including different designs to each central core. The building consists of 147 bespoke volumetric units which sizes were tailored to ensure all single rooms and bathrooms were contained within individual units. Double walls were introduced to enable MTX to install all of the first fix M&E services off-site.
The original facility comprised of a 32 bed Acute Medical Unit (AMU) on the ground floor, a first floor 33 bed Adult Stroke Unit (ASU), a fallow second floor and a rooftop plantroom. In response to the UK 2020 Coronavirus pandemic, the second floor was fitted out as part of the NHS strategy for Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital to become the Nightingale Hospital for the region. This provided an additional 33 High Dependency Unit (HDU) beds and 9 positive pressure ventilated lobby isolation rooms, equipped with fully compliant IPS/UPS systems and dual circuit 60 l/min undiversified oxygen per bed.
The offsite structure is supported by 20m concrete piles, ring beams and upstands foundation, which enabled a level building platform across a site that sloped by 1.5m from front-to-back. All formwork and rebar were prepared off-site and lifted into final position, reducing the size of our site compound and allowing us to maintain uninterrupted access to the neighbouring Oncology Department.
Precast concrete was used to form the 3 and a half storey lift shaft. The initial enabling works also included HV Ring Main and Mains Cold Water diversions, as well as identifying and protecting the main BT Fibre link to the hospital, which runs underneath the building.
The Trust had specified a tight programme in order to meet current demands, therefore speed of build was the key requirement for this project. Outstanding management skills accomplished a design period of just 1 month, enabling the MTX project team to keep within the strict timescales and deliver the project on time in just 44 weeks; impossible using traditional construction methods.
Winter conditions during the installation period was also a main consideration for the project team who had to plan lift operations well in advance and in line with forecasted fair weather. All 147 volumetric units were successfully installed early 2020 around storms Brendan, Ciara and Dennis.
Although the project was constructed during an incredibly difficult and disruptive time, the MTX team worked tirelessly to ensure it was finished to the highest possible standard. Early feedback from the end users has been outstanding, with particular complements given to the care and attention to detail given to all aspects of the job.