Our development services employ a four phase process orchestrated to maximize the value of the proposed facility, by assuring good early decisions that avoid wasted effort and time for all those involved. All phases are driven by our core commitment that:
Everything should be done on purpose, leaving nothing to chance. and…
Everything should be done right the first time, so it is only paid for once.
The first critical step in the project will be to clearly define its scope, or create a concise description of the facility’s requirements and the construction budget – together known as “Predesign” tasks. This information will serve to define the size of building, space, and/or land necessary to support the proposed Clinical/Healthcare function, and establish the projected development cost associated with it. If initial expectations exceed available resources, then modified or scaled down options are developed. By the end of Predesign the client will understand what is necessary and/or affordable, and have thorough documentation with which to convey their facility needs and project parameters to a qualified facility planner.
Phase 1 Timeline: 1 – 3 weeks from signed agreement
Phase 1 Deliverables:
- Detailed architectural space program(s), identifying the function and size of every space necessary for the intended delivery of clinical/healthcare services.
- Functional relationship narrative — desirable spatial adjacencies and separations, as well as primary systems and patterns of patient, staff, and material movement.
- Economic Proforma(s) projecting the facility development costs for the project including land acquisition, construction cost, professional fees, etc.
Functional Planning is the process of converting Predesign information into an operationally efficient floor plan, optimized for the specific client and healthcare services provided. This highly desirable configuration will result from a careful balance of the priorities for patient privacy and comfort, functional adjacency, staffing efficiency, separation of incompatible activities, budget limitations, provider convenience, and regulatory compliance.
This phase begins with creation of a planning recommendation, based on our prior experience and expertise with similar facilities across the nation, which meets the needs identified in the predesign documents. All floor plans developed will demonstrate their functional fit with locations of furniture, equipment, cabinetry and fixtures shown in every space and at every work position. The initial plan recommendation will be reviewed and interactively modified with client representatives for their sign-off approval.
For facilities seeking State Health approval (usually licensure) the client-approved plan will then be reviewed with State Health Department officials (if available) and modified as necessary to achieve preliminary State Health approval as well.
Phase 2 Timeline: 2 – 3 weeks
Phase 2 Deliverables:
At completion of Functional Planning you will have floor plans based on contemporary trends in healthcare delivery with characteristics that make your healthcare service uniquely valuable to you, your community, and patient population. This plan’s value will be reinforced by your thorough understanding of the design decisions made and functional highlights achieved — an understanding only possible with an interactive on-site plan refinement process.
Spatial Design Refinement is the process of enhancing the Functional Plan with design aspects necessary to maximize its value and patient care capability, and facilitate its regulatory compliance. In other words the determination of physical characteristics important to the operation and efficiency of the facility, from electrical outlet locations, to cabinetry design, to lighting, to sinks and faucets, to room finish and door schedules, and beyond.
As with the previous phase, this task begins with our initial recommendations (based on oue experience with similar projects) which are interactively reviewed and modified at your site.
Phase 3 Timeline: 2 – 4 weeks
Phase 3 Deliverables:
At completion of this development phase you will have the following documentation of your facility’s detailed design:
- Furniture floor plans.
- Reflected ceiling plans showing lighting and schematic switching control.
- Sound resistant construction locations.
- Power and communication location plans.
- Cabinetry design elevations and enlarged plans.
- Schematic details of special or customized design features.
- Functional descriptions of the nurse call system, if desired.
- Schematic locations and features of fire protection and life safety design required for the specific type of facility.
- Outline Specifications identifying standards specifically appropriate to the type of facility.
- Room finish schedules
- Hardware and door schedules.
Design Integrity Facilitation & Assessment services streamline and focus the efforts of local design professionals – the purpose being to facilitate effective and complete adherence to design intent and regulatory compliance issues through completion of the Architect’s & Engineers’ construction documents. As opposed to providing traditional “full architectural services,” WEL Designs focuses on what no one else can do as well (medical planning and regulatory compliance); and supports local design professionals as they follow through with the rest (construction documents and permitting).
Typical responsibilities for WEL Designs during this phase include: clarification of design intent, clarification of regulatory requirements (as applicable), coordination of local professional initiated changes to the planning, resolution of challenges to design intent during construction document development, and review of 95% complete Construction Documents for obvious signs of regulatory compliance and preservation of design intent.
Phase 4 Timeline: Contingent on local professionals’ progress
Phase 4 Deliverables:
- Project handoff meeting with the Client and local design professionals responsible for the remainder of project development. The meeting will serve to assure the understanding of the local professional(s) regarding the purpose of the facility, design considerations through schematic design, and the regulatory status of the work (considerations and reviews to date, remaining tasks / areas of responsibility, etc.)
- Periodic (up to three) document development virtual meetings (long distance) with Architect and Engineers to identify deviations from design intent, and establish owner acceptable alternatives
- Review of up to two progress sets of Construction Documents to assess conformance with Schematic Design intent, the local professionals’ performance of regulatory conformance responsibilities, and integration of fixed medical &/or building service equipmenT
- On-call availability to facilitate resolution of issues identified during the local professionals’ work, relative to unforeseen obstacles to effective completion of the desired facility design and/or regulatory approval.