Mater Hospital Development, Belfast

The existing hospital building is listed and dates from the late 19th century. The new buildings accommodate a 150 bed 3-storey ward block, a day surgery unit, pharmacy, out patient department and a mall housed in a 3-storey atrium which provides a new main entrance and primary circulation to the overall development. The building is a concrete framed structure on piled foundations. The roof and high level plant-rooms are steel framed. As part of the development, the opportunity was also been taken to upgrade the roads and services infrastructure around the hospital. An additional phase which included a new access road and car parking was also added to the scheme.

The first stage of construction commenced with an advance substructure contract which included piling and ground beams, followed by services diversion works and building demolition. Following demolition of the old convent and adjoining hospital buildings, a major relocation exercise was required to free the site for the new works. Close co-operation between the client, the Health Estates Agency, and design team was a key to the successful completion of this phase of the project.

The extension had to be carefully designed and co-ordinated as the new building is highly serviced. Within the constraints of the Trust budget, a high quality facility was provided with an impressive use of space and co-ordination of old and new. The design had to facilitate building within a working hospital and it was essential that no services were disrupted. The building is designed to allow for full flexibility in relation to future developments in the delivery of medical services to be accommodated.