Designs for the new Alder Hey hospital revealed


The Acorn consortium is to be formally announced as the Preferred Bidder for the new project

The new Alder Hey Children\'s Hospital will replace outdated facilities and create a flagship building of international excellence

Designs for the new Alder Hey hospital have been revealed this month by Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley. As a specialist hospital, Alder Hey is one of Europe’s biggest and busiest children’s hospitals with a national and international reputation as a Centre of Excellence for children with cancer, heart, spinal and brain disease. However, the current buildings are almost 100 years old and are not fit for providing modern day services.

The new hospital will be built in Springfield Park, next door to the current site. Once the building is constructed the existing Alder Hey will be demolished and turned into a replacement park. The new Alder Hey will therefore sit right in the heart of the park, surrounded by green space that can be seen from almost every window.

The total investment programme, including construction of the new and demolishing of the old Alder Hey, is £237m. Now Alder Hey is a Foundation Trust it is able to set a longer-term financial savings programme. It also has a charity that supports the hospital. A large proportion of the scheme will be funded by cash surpluses generated by Alder Hey, and from the Trust's charity. The remaining borrowing for the scheme (£104m) will be funded through PFI.

The Acorn consortium (comprising John Laing, Laing O’Rourke and Interserve) to be formally announced as the Preferred Bidder for the new hospital project. The announcement follows approval of the project by the Department of Health and HM Treasury.

John Laing and Laing O’Rourke each hold 40% of the total investment equity in the project with Interserve holding 20%. Laing O’Rourke Construction will design and build the new hospital and Interserve will provide the hard facilities management services. The project is expected to achieve financial close in Winter 2012 and the official opening of the new hospital is planned for Summer 2015.

The new hospital will have a floor area of 60,000m2 and will have 270 beds, including 48 critical care beds for patients in ICU, HDU and Burns. There will be six standard wards with 32 beds. Each ward will have two four bed bays and 24 single rooms on each ward. That means the majority of children will have their own room with en-suite facilities, improving patient and family privacy and dignity.

The hospital will house 16 operating theatres, four for day-case surgery and 12 inpatient theatres. The new development will also include a multi-storey car park with 1200 spaces.

Lead Architect for the project at BDP, Benedict Zucchi said; “Our design concept has not only captured the imagination of children, parents and staff but has also demonstrated itself as a flexible and effective approach, which has evolved through a significant number of user engagement meetings and allowed us to fine-tune the clinical layouts and optimise adjacencies to an unprecedented level.”