Client: NHS Orkney
BHC was appointed by Robertson as the steelwork and metal decking contractor for the new NHS Orkney Hospital & Healthcare Facility, Kirkwall. The new healthcare facilities will be a replacement for the existing Balfour Hospital, two local GP Practices and the Public Dental Service. The new state-of-the-art facility will reduce the number of residents having to travel to the mainland for routine healthcare.
The development encompasses 49 en-suite bedrooms for in-patients, assessments, maternity and mental health needs. The new purpose-built hospital includes A&E, surgical theatres, day surgery and cancer & palliative care.
BHC was responsible for the fabrication and erection of 1,194 tonnes of steelwork. The two-storey structure features two inner courtyards, one fully enclosed within the building and the other partially enclosed horseshoe-shaped yard with an opening. The geometry of the design is complex due to the curved longitudinal grids being based on several radii. Straight beams were used within most areas which effectively faceted the frame between grids however, for the tightest curves, BHC fabricated and erected curved steel members. The perimeter columns were erected in a regular 6m grid pattern with the internal columns arranged around the tighter curves of the courtyard varying from 4m to 7m spacings.
The hospital layout is standard with a central corridor running through the middle of the building with rooms on either side. The services are located below the steel first floor and roof beams on either side. The services are located below the steel first floor and roof beams with some services located within the beam’s depth via a series of bespoke service holes. BHC used a shared BIM model to ensure that service clashes were avoided.
The hospital entrance features a double-height, column-free space known as the hub. The hub was formed by a series of 15m long rafters. The steel frame gains most of its stability from vertical diagonal bracing positioned within internal partition walls. The first floor of the facility was designed with flexibility in mind. Moment frames were used instead of bracing, allowing partition walls and room layouts to change if required.
The speed in which steelwork can be constructed was vital throughout the project as the envelope of the building was designed to allow an early wind and watertight position allowing internal trades to progress despite the weather.