Conducting Due Diligence for New Facilities
Building a new facility offers a number of exciting opportunities. However, the cost and choices involved can be overwhelming. Taking the time to conduct due diligence can save you dollars down the road. Below, you’ll find descriptions of each of the four steps of the process.
Visioning helps get projects off to the right start. The goals of this step are to develop a vision for the proposed facility that aligns with the organization’s mission, vision, values and brand and to garner community interest and support. To carry this out successfully, you should gather information from a variety of sources, such as:
HCAHPS scores, as well as any other performance metrics, like Press Ganey
Key community organizations
After analyzing the collected data, your design team should prepare a summary and inspiration board for you to review and comment upon.
This next phase helps determine space requirements, departmental adjacencies and the need for ancillary buildings. It also takes into account interdepartmental process integration and flow. The design team typically starts by reviewing existing departments and interdepartmental relationships. They should also meet with hospital leadership and department directors. This will inform their programming documents, which include items like square footage for each department, proposed adjacencies and a summary of process integration and flow. After the initial draft, the designers should work closely with you to review and finetune the documents.
The final version will be used by a cost estimator to create a project budget specific to the location and market conditions. It should also offer adjustments for inflation and escalation related to the project’s timeframe.
Once you’ve determined a vision and figured out the space needs, it’s time to evaluate the suitability of the proposed land. For this step, your architect should work hand-in-hand with you to select civil engineering, geotechnical and environmental assessment firms to analyze the site. The designers will use those reports to identify site constraints, such as drainage, winds, etc. At this point, they will also review development codes and standards and meet with authorities who have jurisdiction over the land. From this information, they will create a site analysis plan showing the information outlined above.
This is when things really take shape. All of the information collected up until this point is used to create several site plan options. These documents show important aspects of the area, like roads, site entrances, facility entrances and facility placement, as well as future growth opportunities. Hospital leadership will weigh in on the presented options and provide feedback, as well as a best course forward. This final document will eventually act as a guide for the future development.