The UPMC Susquehanna Innovation Center is an 80,000-sq. ft., four-story building structure at the Williamsport Regional Medical Center of the UPMC health System.

Larson Design Group (LDG) provided structural, mechanical, plumbing, and electrical services as a subconsultant to project architect Burkavage Design Associates. LDG also provided site engineering services directly with UPMC Susquehanna and in close coordination with the Architect. The design was completed utilizing Revit Building Information Modeling (BIM) software.

LDG Site was tasked with the need to incorporate this facility with the surrounding area, but more importantly with the recently constructed Patient Tower expansion. The first of many building projects, the Tower expansion created a new front for the facility by moving the main entrance to the south and face towards the City of Williamsport.

Proposed to be just a few feet south of the Patient Tower, the HIC was placed in what at the time was parking and landscaping. The building expansion needed to be seamless in its connection with the Tower. The site demanded the need to work with multiple public and private utilities, as the proposed structure crossed vacated City streets with multiple utility lines many of which were still active. The building was physically connected with the Patient Tower with a long glass corridor, which proved to be challenging by the need to meet accessibility requirements and at the same time limit the amount of on-site earthwork.

With a large vehicular drop-off servicing the Tower to the north the HIC would require a similar design feature to serve visitors and patients to the building. This required working within tight grading constraints to accommodate and also be functional. An adjacent garden area for patient and visitor contemplation constructed for the Tower was also within the project footprint. This area was reconstructed to look like it was never effected by the project. Landscape and lighting features incorporated within this space were taken beyond the building to better connect the multiple projects.

The building is a steel-framed structure. The floor systems of the building are composite steel construction utilizing slab on deck. For the roof, steel bar joists and conventional steel roof deck is utilized. Laterally, the building used braced frames to resist all wind and seismic loading. Finally, site soil conditions allowed for the use of conventional shallow foundations. Therefore, spread footings and slab on grade were utilized for the first floor level of the building.

The HVAC system included variable air volume modular rooftop air handlers with hot water reheat. The air handlers have return and supply fans and provide conditioned air through a modulating chilled water coil. A hot water reheat coil is located in the air handler for dehumidification purposes. Exam rooms and offices were zoned with variable air volume reheat boxes for individual temperature control. Chilled water, hot water, and domestic water is brought to the building from a central utility plant. The air handlers, exhaust fans, unit heaters, and fan coil units were all tied into and are controlled by the Building Automation System.

Electrical distribution for the building included a new medium-voltage sub-feed from the existing hospital to the switchgear in the new building and a 480V sub-feed from the existing emergency power system for the hospital to feed the appropriate circuits in the new building. A separate transfer switch was included to send necessary signals back to the generators that serve the hospital. Energy efficient lighting systems are specified for both interior and exterior areas impacted by the new construction, with additional lighting controls (daylight sensors, occupancy/vacancy sensors, time-clocks, “semi-centralized” switching) to maximize energy savings, as well as provide appropriate functionality. Emergency and egress lighting conforms to current code requirements. The fire alarm system is compatible with the system for the existing hospital. Access control and security systems were coordinated with the hospital’s selected vendor. Although not required by code, the nurse call system met client requirements. The necessary information technology infrastructure met the client’s standards and requirements for both hard-wired and wireless access, and for potential CCTV application.