The design of labs for sustainable construction and operation has become a major driver in the A/E/C industry over the past 10 to 15 years. Most large academic, government and corporate lab clients are looking for sustainable design approaches at a minimum, and third-party certification, such as LEED, in many cases.
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This month's issue of Laboratory Design Newsletter features articles on sustainability in labs, new methods for optimizing flexibility in research environments, commissioning, how to be a great first-time user representative, liquid-cooled sustainability and more. The issue also includes news notes, new products and new projects.
Without substantial experience in Biosafety Level 3 work it can be easily underestimated just how much is involved in designing a BSL-3 facility. Design guidelines such as the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL) list BSL-3/ABSL-3 design criteria that may appear as a deceptively simple upgrade to BSL-2; a good bit of reading between the lines is needed.
The 2015 Laboratory Design Conference is open for registration. Your opportunity to learn, network and participate in discussions about current and future trends in lab design is coming to Atlanta, April 27-29th. The countdown to the conference has begun, and here’s a countdown of reasons why you should be there.
A buzzword thrown around in lab design is commissioning. But truly how important is this process to meeting end goals? My answer: extremely. Building commissioning is the process of verifying, in new construction, all building subsystems to achieve an owner’s project requirements as intended by the building owner and as designed by the building architects and engineers.
Flexibility in research labs has been a universal goal in recent years. Components that contribute to flexibility include lab casework systems and utility connections, zoning specific areas of a building and programming. In many situations, flexibility is solely focused on the solutions possible within the typical lab area vs. a more holistic look at the larger view of the research ecosystem.
Many higher education institutions are struggling to meet a broad spectrum of facilities recapitalization needs that return the greatest benefit to the campus. These needs include capital improvements to flexible facilities that support contemporary learning and create an interactive, collaborative experience for the broad and evolving campus community.
The typical lab building is an energy hog. These buildings house complex environments heavy on equipment and infrastructure and are regulated by strict code requirements. While the basics of green architecture create a strong backbone for sustainable lab environments, a truly successful green lab strategy strives to contribute to the occupants’ comfort while addressing a need for constant change, heavy energy usage and waste regulations.
How do we design labs for future uses that haven’t been defined? Today’s interdisciplinary approach to scientific research requires synergistic, extremely flexible lab spaces that accommodate the needs of diverse users. To support the growing convergence of scientific disciplines and quickly evolving technologies, organizations must provide flexible research environments that allow for efficient short- and long-term changes.
Commissioning has become an increasingly common practice. It’s essentially a formalized functional performance test of an entire building’s systems—a process that validates, verifies and documents the builder’s project objectives have been fully met. Simply put, commissioning independently confirms newly built, renovated or existing buildings work the way they’re supposed to.
A proposed framework for an alternative, integrated path to becoming an architect, which could culminate in students earning their architectural license at graduation, has drawn interest from more than 30 institutions that offer accredited architectural degree programs, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) announced.
The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) and Skanska announced a new U.S. partnership. With the partnership, Skanska has committed to aligning the delivery of heavy infrastructure civil projects with efforts to ensure the social, economic and environmental sustainability of the communities where they are built.
The new $82 million instructional science facility at Univ. of Wisconsin-La Crosse will be designed by a collaboration of national architecture and engineering firm SmithGroupJJR in association with local partner River Architects. This project will provide a complete replacement of Cowley Hall, the current UW-La Crosse science instruction facility built in 1965.
EYP announced Leslie Sims recently joined the firm as a Science Expert, supporting EYP’s nationally recognized higher education, government and corporate sectors. For more than 30 years, she has been a widely acknowledged leader in innovative architecture for science, engineering and technology, and is nationally recognized for the management, planning and design of a wide variety of lab spaces.
Arup, a multidisciplinary engineering and consulting firm, announced Carl Crow, PE, ASHRAE HBDP, has joined the firm in its Houston location as an associate principal mechanical engineer with a focus on healthcare and research facilities. Crow will be responsible for leading and growing the healthcare/health science design capabilities in the firm’s Houston office.
Treanor Architects is pleased to announce the hiring of Patrick Jones to the firm’s S&T team. With 15 years of experience in architecture, and a specialized focus on science and lab facilities, Jones adds depth to the firm’s capabilities.