BOX 3.6 Building Design and Site Selection Issues
build a flexible laboratory building will be more than recovered over the lifetime of the laboratory.
Designing and siting any large building involves many considerations, some of which are given in Box 3.6. Siting a laboratory facility requires attention to all those listed and others. Some issues, such as new construction versus renovation, must be resolved before others can be considered. Others, such as building height and number of floors, are interrelated. The resolution of some, such as desired interactions, depends on the sociology of the institution. Others, such as zoning, require the participation of specialty consultants. A master plan and a facilities program should be successfully completed before any decisions are made about building design and site selection.
The resolution of these issues requires a large number of participants. The design professional should assist the client team to understand the dependencies of some of these issues, and expert consultants should be engaged where necessary. The process discussed in Chapter 2 should be used.
The predesign phase of the laboratory project often includes a recommendation to renovate an existing facility, build an addition to an existing facility, build a new facility, or combine the three approaches. The recommended renovations may involve an existing laboratory building, or the conversion of a nonlaboratory building to laboratory use. The primary advantage of renovating an existing building is the potential savings that result from reuse of the existing structure, enclosure, partitions, and MEP systems and equipment. However, for large renovations or additions, the potential savings may be minimal because some or all of the building components may require modification or rehabilitation. For example, the building structure may require reinforcement either to accommodate programmatic requirements related to loading or vibration-free environments or to comply with current building codes. Programmatic require-