Earlier this year, the redevelopment and expansion of Bluewater Health (Sarnia, Ont.) allowed the facility to become the province’s first acute-care project to earn certification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) New Construction (NC) program.
Designed by Farrow Partnership Architects (FPA) and associate architects Stantec Architecture Ltd., construction on the $214-million public redevelopment job was substantially completed in 2010. The project, the largest the Sarnia-Lambton region has ever seen, involved adding 30,193 m2 (325,000 sf) to the building’s existing 44,000 m2 (470,000 sf) of renovated space. This included a 2787-m2 (30,000-sf) surgical centre containing eight operating rooms and four procedure rooms to replace the existing facilities.
Another component of the redevelopment project for Bluewater Health was the inclusion of a floor designated for maternal infant/child programs. This means the labour, birthing, and pediatric services were consolidated in one space, rather than spread throughout multiple floors. Some of the other elements of the hospital’s expansion included an emergency services area, underground parking, and a two-storey main entrance and public atrium.
The additions and renovations were implemented with sustainable features and designs. Those contributing to the building’s LEED NC certification include:
- green roof;
- building envelope with high R-values;
- recycling 89 per cent of the building site’s material waste;
- central atrium with glazing and sharing devices in order to realize passive solar gains; and
- co-ordinated modular wall assemblies and furniture systems.
When the plans for the project began in 2001, the application for LEED certification was given to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) because its Canadian counterpart (CaGBC) did not exist.
Tye Farrow, a senior partner at FPA, explains this is only the beginning for LEED healthcare facilities in the country being designed by the firm. He says some of the buildings being completed in the near future include the redevelopment of St. Mary’s Hospital (Sechelt, B.C.), which aims to be the first LEED Platinum carbon-neutral hospital in North America. The firm is also working on what may be Canada’s first LEED Gold continuing-care hospital complex being constructed in Mission, B.C.