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CIBSE COVID-19 Achievement Award - Ridge and Partners


Covid-19 Achievement Award
Created for 2021 in association with CIBSE Journal, this award recognises the remarkable work that building services professionals, with their supply chain, have undertaken to contribute to the nation’s efforts to combat the effects of Covid-19. It celebrates the outstanding achievements of individuals, teams, organisations, projects, products or services, taking account of the challenges they have faced across the full range of activities in the built environment, and the impact they have made in responding to the unprecedented circumstances of 2020.

Bristol Nightingale - Ridge and Partners

Ridge’s brief was simple – deliver more than 300 intensive care beds in the mothballed University of the West of England Exhibition Centre in Bristol within four weeks. By midday on the same day, floor tiles were being lifted and services modified to enable critical timescale items to be targeted first.
The only records for the building were outdated or incomplete, so the first task was to understand what the NHS had inherited in terms of existing MEP infrastructure. Ridge compared the potential of the existing services to the relevant Health Technical Memoranda for intensive care provision, and highlighted derogations or work needed to meet the standards.
New services required included generator and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) emergency power back up to the beds, medical gases, vacuum, oxygen depletion from ventilators and critical ventilation air-change rates. These were all achieved through intrusive surveys/validations recorded in a matter of days, before moving on to evaluation and adoption/reconfiguration design.
Ridge was based on site 12 hours a day, seven days a week for the duration of the project, to ensure design decisions were timely and concise for immediate installation. It modelled the intensive care beds using BIM, to ensure timely approval by NHS clinicians.
With many manufacturers and suppliers closed because of the national lockdown, Ridge used its supply chain contacts effectively to design and source key items with minimal delay, keeping the design flexible to suit the availability of products.
Main contractors from the Exeter, Southampton and Cardiff Nightingale Hospitals contacted Ridge to understand the challenges. We shared our design freely with all parties to enable them to get up to speed quickly, without any corporate gain.
Two contractors also visited Bristol Nightingale to understand what had or hadn’t worked well – for example, the prefabricated nurse station unit with IPS panel, sink, copper pipework and instantaneous water heaters, which speeded up installation dramatically.
Ridge used its engineering skills to overcome the challenges of an evolving brief, short learning curve and supply chain pressures to safeguard the delivery of the scheme.