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The Integrated Enterprise: Beck's Collaborative Design-Build Culture Shines at CAMLS

Pronounced “camels,” CAMLS stands for The Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation. Previously operating in five locations throughout Hillsborough County, the University of South Florida and USF Health envisioned a new CAMLS education facility under one roof that would revolutionize how to learn, practice and perfect the medical skills of tomorrow. To house all the locations in one facility would be a major accomplishment in itself. But also adding an aggressive 13-month timeframe from groundbreaking to completion for the new location made for a huge undertaking. To accomplish this, USF selected The Beck Group and Beck's Integrated Enterprise design-build model. “We put CAMLS on the path of 50% success by choosing a design-build approach, and Beck added the other 50% by offering and executing its integrated model,” said Fells Stubs, executive director of USF Financing Corp.

CAMLS illustrates the best example of what Beck’s Integrated Enterprise approach represents: the merging of all the disciplines of design-build within one company and bottom line. When architecture, estimating and construction is provided by one firm, there are no silos—a pitfall that can plague traditional design-build.

“When CAMLS knocked at the door, we were ahead of the curve with the next generation of design-build,” said Mark House, Beck's managing director. Beck’s Integrated Enterprise can quickly respond to program changes typical of a highly collaborative user, and allowed Beck to hit the ground running.

Deborah Sutherland, CAMLS CEO and liaison between USF Health and CAMLS played a significant role in program planning and observed the impact of Beck’s approach. “When a project is on a fast track like this, and designs are evolving as construction is underway, it took a team intimately familiar with one another and with shared knowledge and ownership,” she said. “If a problem came up, or we needed a change here or there, Beck could make it happen, because we were all in one room at the same table throughout the project.”

CAMLS’ industry partners were creating and making leading-edge programs available, even as the building was coming out of the ground. This meant complex design modifications were made in the office and the field, often after critical construction milestones had been met. Beck’s Integrated Enterprise model helped with this process, removing communications barriers between team members. The entire team-architects, construction managers and superintendents, all shared the same desks.

 

Five Major Focuses in Three Levels
The five major focus areas of CAMLS are improving medical training and patient safety, creating aggressive and needed healthcare solutions through cutting-edge technology, innovation and simulation. With all focus areas combined in a three-level structure, CAMLS is now home to the finest training facility of its kind in the nation.

First Floor – The Surgical and Interventional Training Center (SITC) is a hands-on surgical and interventional skills center where surgeons and healthcare teams perform interventional
procedures.

Second Floor – The Education Center is an interactive space featuring a 200-person high-tech tiered auditorium, classrooms, high-resolution conference room, executive boardroom exhibit space, registration area and catering kitchen.

Third Floor – The Virtual Patient Care Center (VPCC) is home to simulation technology where doctors, nurses, anesthesiologists and other healthcare providers hone their skills. Fully equipped patient exam rooms, training rooms, virtual inpatient and retail pharmacy are combined with surgical simulators for training.

The Tampa Bay Research and Innovation Center (TBRIC), adjacent to VPCC, is a modeling and simulation room where scientists, engineers, doctors and industry partners can work together to develop new, better and safer devices, procedures and instruments for patient care.

Challenges Facing the Project Team
The SITC features an OR Trauma room and the only hybrid catheterization lab of its kind in the world. In this space, healthcare teams move from interventional procedures to open surgical procedures without leaving the treatment room or changing healthcare teams. It is a true-to-life environment where surgeons, interventional cardiologists, interventional radiologist and residents learn robotic, computer-assisted and image-guided surgeries.

Like all CAMLS spaces, SITC required authenticity, said Dr. John Armstrong, chief medical officer for CAMLS and director for trauma and disaster education at USF Health. “The setting had to perfectly replicate a hospital and much more,” he said. “There is no faking it here.”

Working closely with Philips, CAMLS lighting partner, Stryker, CAMLS medical equipment provider, and the structural engineer, Beck’s team incorporated the latest in environmental lighting in the middle of the CT scanner and other highly complex medical equipment.

In a matter of days, a state-of-the-art space was designed where Philips’ lighting system could duplicate nearly any mood conditions surgeons would encounter while performing surgeries – from battlefields to natural disaster zones.

During construction the Beck team was tested many times. A challenge presented itself when a CAMLS industry partner – an onsite tissue bank and accredited vivarium – signed on, bringing its program six months into construction. This required a re-design and re-alignment of space allocated for other uses.

In order to meet the business needs of the tissue bank, which would serve CAMLS and its other customers throughout the region, the tissue bank required proximity to the surgical suites and adequate space to conduct its business. This included access to the service corridor and loading dock.

In two weeks’ time, Beck’s design team wove these changes into buildable construction drawings, working with its building team in the field, who knew the up-to-the-minute conditions and were prepared in advance for the changes.

And with construction completion only months away, Stryker presented an opportunity to roll out its new Suitstream telecommunications system. The system would improve the entire surgical learning experience and needed to be implemented.

This change required a complete overhaul of the finalized audio-visual drawings to match the new plan from Stryker. The switch to digital telecommunications not only meant improvements for sending and receiving video signals, it meant that live surgeries could be streamed into video monitors throughout

CAMLS and—in real time—to anywhere around the globe. Beck’s integrated team smoothly handled the potentially significant change, keeping the project on schedule.

Beck's Integrated Enterprise proved itself invaluable during the CAMLS project with architecture, estimating and construction merging together seamlessly. “If we had not had the architect and construction on the same team, in the same room working hand-in-hand with the owner, we could not have accomplished what we did in 13 months,” said Sutherland.

Eric Kreher, Beck principal architect, summed up the CAMLS challenge. “Each of CAMLS additions in programs added value. Because our designers, construction managers and consultants were at the same table, hearing discussions at the same time, we were able to quickly realign priorities and make things happen on the spot.”


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