Susan Smith has worked as an editor and writer in the technology industry for over 16 years. As an editor she has been responsible for the launch of a number of technology trade publications, both in print and online. Currently, Susan is the Editor of GISCafe and AECCafe, as well as those sites’ … More »
Cancer Treatment Centre in the UK offers “Care Villages” for healing
November 15th, 2013 by Susan Smith
The winner of the “Innovation in Building” Category in the Bentley Be Inspired Awards held in London during the “Year in Infrastructure 2013” event this month was the Cancer Treatment Centre for Guy’s and St. Thomas Hospitals, London.
The architects on this GBP 160 million project were Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners. Willem Kirk, Ben Goble and Steve Martin of that firm spoke about the process of coming up with the design, which was a renovation of a large clinical hospital building into a facility that gives the feel of a much smaller, intimate, non-clinical facility.
Part of what makes that possible is that the architects broke up the 14 stories into “care villages”: a chemotherapy village, a radiotherapy village, and a one-stop village for outpatients.
It was the firm’s first integrated BIM project. According to Goble, the BIM protocol was a very ambitious process for them. They used a number of different softwares, including Bentley AECOsim Building Designer, ArchiCAD, Bentley Architecture, Bentley MicroStation, Autodesk Revit, and Autodesk Navisworks. They used AECOsim for practically every aspect of the project.
The project had to meet a BREEM rating of 72 %. “It took a long time to engage in the BIM process,” said Goble. “We engaged in data exchanges to get 2D information from the engineers, and eventually we got 3D models. In future projects we would encourage all collaborators to work in 3D as early as possible.”
There were time constraints on this project as there are on all projects. The existing building had a lot of services coming together. “We had to communicate to MEP, especially, how it would work and had to communicate how the design will feel and work. The idea was to celebrate these services,” said Kirk.
Recognizing BIM’s potential, this was the first project where the firm set out to do a data saturated 3D model. All of the data is tagged and catalogued, which the contractor saw as a big plus. They really liked being able to look at fabrication in the BIM model.
The design was such that you would see mostly balconies. “Using a single balcony module, we semi-automatically recached all our drawings,” said Kirk. “Our focus was on design rather than creating the drawings.”
They used AECOsim with complex facades, which were complicated due to the relationship with the balconies. By having the model saturated with information they could draw information out of it as needed.
The architects were able to visualize and produce their models in 3D rendering in MicroStation. All the final renders were done in MicroStation.
AECOsim Building Designer provided a very flexible platform to support a successful collaboration, as well as clash detection and rendering. Migrating users from MicroStation to AECOsim Building Designer was relatively easy. AECOsim Building Designer performed well on small- to medium-sized models. i-Models were used and hold a lot of potential because they are small and contain good business data.
Goble said that these improvements would help in future projects:
The goal of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners was to “Humanize the building, by providing natural ventilation, balconies, all of which gives people more control of their environment. They feel domesticated, and the spaces that flow from village to the outside don’t feel so exposed. Our intention was to break down the building and make it seem smaller,” summarized Goble.
Tags: AEC, architects, Bentley Systems, BIM, BREEM, building information modeling, Cancer Treatment Centre for Guy's and St. Thomas Hospitals, engineers, London, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Year in Infrastructure 2013, YII2013