Renovation v. New Construction in Lab Environments
The collapse of the United States housing market in 2007-08 precipitated a nearly commensurate downturn in new nonresidential construction during the past few years, choking off capital funding for many projects. And, although the President's Plan for Science and Innovation promised to double the National Science Foundation's budget by 2017, economic volatility and uncertainty have had a dramatic impact on the plans for, and the conduct of, research and education in the private and public sectors, leaving research organizations with less national funding.
The result: Organizations are turning increasingly to renovations to meet up pent-up space demand and potentially save money.
The inherent limitations of existing facilities-facility condition, seismic upgrades, program complexity, energy performance, phasing logistics, floorplate and height constraints, and so on-can make renovation an extensive and expensive undertaking. In Laboratory Design Magazine's February 2013 issue (see Related Content below), SmithGroupJJR counts down the whys and why nots of a laboratory facility renovation.