Above-ground construction work has begun on the new state-of-the art pathology laboratory at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, which is set to serve patients across West Yorkshire and Harrogate.
Footage captured by the Trust’s time-lapse camera shows significant progress as the building is brought to above-ground level for the first time since BAM Construction Commenced on-site works in April of this year.
Based at St James’ Hospital, the new facility will become part of the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Pathology Network, formed through the collaboration of the West Yorkshire Association of Acute Trusts (WYAAT) and will support the delivery of pathology services across the region.
As well as supporting improvements in diagnosis for people across West Yorkshire and Harrogate, the new laboratory will help to meet the growing regional demand for specialist treatment and care whilst providing development opportunities for staff.
The installation of both the staircase and lift shafts is nearing completion and has involved the off-site casting, delivery and installation of 506 tonnes of concrete units using a mobile crane.
With much of the pre-fabrication happening off-site, BAM Construction have been able to maximise efficiencies in their programme delivery and reduce waste, supporting the Trust’s sustainability and net zero carbon agenda.
Andrew Smithson, Project Manager at BAM Construction Ltd – North East, said: “We’re really pleased with the progress we’re making so far on a facility that will bring huge benefits to the region.
“BAM is fully committed to playing its part in creating sustainable and environmentally-friendly developments, and the steps we have taken to ensure this is reflected in this project will also help to contribute towards Leeds Teaching Hospitals’ net zero carbon goals.”
The new facility is set to be completed by the end of summer 2023 and will become operational in the autumn. It is also part of the Trust’s wider health improvement plan which includes the development of a new adults’ hospital, a new home for Leeds Children’s Hospital and the largest single-site maternity centre in the UK – all brought together in one building on the Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) site.
Currently, the Trust’s pathology services are provided from within outdated facilities in the Old Medical School at the LGI as well as some of those delivered from St James’s Hospital.
The new building will bring many of these services together and the vacated Old Medical School will form part of a plan to use surplus estate at the LGI to develop an innovation village which is expected to deliver up to 3,000 new jobs and £11.2 bn in net present value.
Simon Worthington, the Trust’s Director of Finance and Senior Responsible Officer for the Building the Leeds Way Programme, said: “Seeing the fantastic progress being made on the construction of our new pathology laboratory is a real boost for both the Trust and the wider community.
“It is also an opportunity for us to demonstrate how committed we are to transforming healthcare in Leeds and the wider city region, by taking another step further towards creating a state-of-the-art working space for our staff and providing an even better service for our patients.”
The new laboratory forms a key part of the strategy for delivering pathology services across West Yorkshire and Harrogate and is prioritised by the West Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership that focuses upon delivering integrated care across the region.
Funding for the new facility is supported by the Health and Care Partnership, recognising the importance of this critical development for partner organisations.
The Trust aims to develop a world-class pathology building that is flexible, digital by design and that supports the delivery of net zero carbon. It will aim to be fully mechanically ventilated with heat recovery and systems to minimise power and re-use heat.
It will also incorporate a single, shared Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) for the area which will mean test requests can be ordered, tracked and results reported electronically to clinical services across West Yorkshire and Harrogate.