The Royal Hobart Hospital in Tasmania has been transformed into a state-of-the-art trauma, teaching and referral facility following the completion of the largest redevelopment in its 207-year history. Opening its doors to patients in April 2020, this landmark project includes approximately 37,000m2 of new construction and approximately 4,000m2 of refurbished spaces in surrounding buildings, and will meet the projected health service needs of the Tasmanian community.

Spanning 11 storeys, the hospital accommodates a new main entry, foyer, café, interventional suites, hyperbaric chamber, five levels of new inpatient wards, two levels of mental health wards, sterilisation department, a helipad as well as interconnections to three surrounding buildings. The redevelopment has enabled an expansion of services to departments including women’s, adolescent and children’s, as well as diagnostic and interventional facilities and endoscopy unit. The project also included the construction of a temporary mental health modular/prefabricated facility located above the hospital forecourt and emergency department, as well as permanent high-dependency mental health in-patient wards.

Working in collaboration with Tasmania’s Department of Health and Human Service, Lyons Architects, and the contractor John Holland and Fairbrother joint venture, AECOM provided multidisciplinary engineering and consulting services including mechanical, electrical, fire, hydraulics, structural, civil and façade engineering, as well as Environmentally Sustainable Design and vibration and acoustic consulting.

Key achievements

Some of the key achievements of the project include:

– Minimising disruption to hospital operations while the construction was carried out. This involved staging the construction and establishing temporary facilities which enabled the decanting of existing buildings for demolition and refurbishment.

– The integration of a low energy, central thermal plant in the basement level to serve Block K, the existing site as well as future stages to reduce operational costs and carbon emissions. This involved tunnelling under existing buildings to run major infrastructure reticulation throughout the site

– The stunning façade was developed collaboratively with Lyons Architects in order to reduce the solar impact on the building, whilst enabling an abundance of natural light.

– A successful stakeholder consultation and collaboration process ensured the design was fully reviewed from both an operational and construction perspective so only the most effective engineering solutions were implemented and programmed.