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Congenital heart centre completed at the LRI

MTX has recently completed a new two-storey modular building at Leicester Royal Infirmary for University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust to house the East Midlands Congenital Heart Centre, with the £4.5 m project completed in 52 weeks.

Working in conjunction with its design partners, MTX designed and produced a bespoke 1,080 m² building, which links into the existing hospital. It houses an operating theatre, a catheter lab, recovery suites, outpatient and diagnostics facilities, ancillary facilities, and  a dedicated plant room. The theatre and catheter lab were constructed on the first floor using a modular-framed traditional cast-in situ concrete floor. This steel structure was upgraded to minimise vibration when the floor and ceiling mounted C-arms are in use.

The design of the facility included the provision of an  IPS/UPS system which serves the theatre, recovery beds, and catheter lab, and was interfaced to back up the Philips imaging equipment in the event of a power cut. The IPS circuits are interlaced to provide N+1 resilience, while the UPS system was designed to provide one-hour autonomy in the event of normal supply being lost.

A full suite of medical gases – including oxygen, nitrous oxide, medical air, surgical air, medical vacuum, and AGSS, was provided via a series of retractable and articulated pendants in both the operating theatre and cath lab. These were carefully co-ordinated with both floor and ceiling mounted C-arms in the catheter lab, to ensure that the room could function both as a catheter lab and an operating theatre. Independent simplex AGSS pumps were provided to each theatre, alongside a spare pump for back-up. A dry riser was installed within the staircase to ensure that all parts of the building were accessible to the first service.

MTX said: “All of the ground floor was installed as a traditional volumetric modular building. This allowed our M&E contractors to fit out the first fix M&E containment in the factory, prior to the components arriving on site. The air-handling units were also fabricated off site and dropped into place in the basement plant room, prior to the installation of the building.”

The new facility achieved a BREEAM score of ‘Very Good’ and an airtightness of 5.2, while U-values are compliant with Approved Document L2B. MTX  says it ‘faced the challenge of rescuing a project on the verge of collapse, because it could not be brought to fruition within budget’. It said: “We took a Stage 3 traditional concrete frame building and redesigned it as a steel-framed hybrid structure, bringing it back into budget through value engineering design and standardised elements.

“As the first floor was to accommodate a cardiac theatre and catheter lab, we could not compromise on the structural performance. The hybrid design allowed the use of pre-finished concrete cassettes on the ground floor, and a steel-framed offsite steel MMC solution on the

first floor, with a traditional cast in situ slab. The lightweight steel framed structure and brick slip façade reduced the overall size of the piled foundation, reducing costs, while still achieving the desired look.”

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