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Laboratory Design, Construction, and Renovation: Participants, Process, and Product
tory systems can be located in the service corridor, thus enabling access to service controls if repairs or an emergency shutdown are required. A service corridor may also provide a secure area for pickup and delivery of materials without requiring entry to the laboratories.
For floors configured with peripheral circulation corridors, the service corridor is typically located in the center of the building at the interface of two laboratory zones. For floors with a central laboratory support zone flanked by corridors in a racetrack configuration, the service corridor may bisect the laboratory support zone. The peripheral or racetrack corridor configuration typically results in a building with a footprint exceeding 100 feet. Research laboratory buildings with footprints of this width, though not uncommon, often require careful consideration during the site selection process as discussed above.
A laboratory building is a dynamic environment. Hundreds of people from different professions use the building and maintain the operating systems and equipment. These people include researchers, technicians, students, customers, secretaries, and maintenance staff, at a minimum. Specialized service technicians are also needed to keep both the building and the instruments and computers within the building in good operating conditions. The ability of these various individuals to move as required throughout the laboratory facility needs to be considered during the design phases of a renovation or construction project.
The flow of supplies and equipment throughout the building also needs to be seamless. Special considerations are needed to address the quantity, size, and weight of supplies and equipment moved within the building. Large instruments such as NMR spectrometers, mass spectrometers, and laser optics tables, and equipment such as mixers, extruders, walk-in refrigerators, and ovens are used in a typical laboratory building. Other large items such as gas cylinders, cryogen cylinders, and photocopiers also are moved through a laboratory building.
The people, equipment, and supplies all need to enter and move smoothly within the building. Entrances for people should be separate from loading docks for receiving supplies and equipment. Inside the building, people and supplies may share circulation corridors and elevators or, in larger buildings, separate freight elevators and delivery service corridors may be provided. While corridors must be designed to optimize the flow of people, equipment, and supplies, they should also be carefully designed to discourage inappropriate uses, such as storage of equipment and supplies.
In addition to the various users and occupants noted above, chemicals, supplies, instrumentation, and furnishings will need to be safely and efficiently transported to and throughout the building. Safe and appropriate paths for hazardous and nonhazardous materials should also be considered during the design phase. Some building and fire codes restrict or prohibit the transport of hazard-