Widely regarded as the #1 children’s hospital in America, the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) embarked on an expansion project to nearly double the size of the campus and ensure the hospital’s continued success. This expansion included a 10-story tower and the infill of a courtyard above an existing mechanical space, as well as offices, operating suites, patient rooms, patient care spaces (including OR and ICU areas), laboratories, and a small animal vivarium.
The design of the tower included long span trusses on which the major mechanical equipment room was located. Cerami & Associates worked closely with the structural engineer to bring the natural vibration frequencies of the trusses up to the level needed to enable satisfactory vibration isolation of mechanical equipment and prevent this vibration from entering the building structure and disrupting the hospital and its vibration-sensitive equipment. We also specified acoustical treatments for all public spaces and mechanical equipment, including air handling equipment, exhaust systems, and cooling towers, to improve both speech privacy and intelligibility.
Vivariums require vibration levels equal to that of a hospital operating room; therefore the potential site adjacent to a parking level posed a challenge. However, upon further measurement and calculation, Cerami’s vibration specialists determined that with the standard suspended ceiling, ductwork, and full-height partitions would provide suitable vibration levels acceptable in a vivarium.