Hospital Patient Tower
East Coast, U.S.A.
Matthew Peyton
Structural Option
General Building Statistics
Campus Arial View
Building Name Hospital Patient Tower
Location East Coast, U.S.A.
Building Occupents Hospital
Size 216,000 Square Feet
Number of Stories 12 Stroies above grade, One story below grade
Duration of Construction Summer 2010- Fall 2012
Cost $161 Million
Project Delivery Method Design-Bid-Build

IBC 2006

State Supplement to 2006 IBC


Hospital Campus

Zoning Classification: C-3

Max Building Height: 162'


Connection to an existing patient tower with proper story elevations and to fit in amongs the style of the srounding campus buildings.

  Project Teams  
General Contractor Turner Construction
Architect Wilmot/sanz
Structural Engineer Cagley & Associates
Civil Engineer Dewberry & Davis
MEP Engineer RMF Engineering, Inc.


Façade Detail



Wilmot Sanz was the architecture firm that designed the Patient Tower as part of the 2015 Capital Improvement Project, of which the Tower Expansion is one of the earlier phases. The new patient will connect with an existing patient tower at every floor by a bank of elevators separated into two sections one for visitors and the other for patients. The Patient Tower will blend in with the existing buildings by keeping some of the red brick on the exterior but also taking on a more modern look by incorporating aluminum curtain wall and precast concrete panels. One of the main design considerations is individual patient rooms. Based on the Hospitals goals for care the individual patient rooms were a large factor in the design of the floor plan. Another design factor is the future addition of a womens care facility as part of the Improvement plan.

  Building Façade  

There are a few different type of material that make up the façade of the Patient Tower.  The major façade materials is a precast concrete panel with a thin brick face. The front entrance way is enclosed with a glass and aluminum curtain wall on the first two levels before transforming in to a mixture of different styles of precast concrete panels with fix glazing. On the 5th floor the building is enclosed with architectural louver to allow the mechanical systems on the floor to get the air needed. See Figure 2.



Living Roof


The main roof system that can be found on the majority of the building’s roof area is a POLYVINYL-CHLORIDE (PVC) ROOFING board placed on top of metal deck or concrete slab and is then followed with insulation board.  Walkway Roof Pavers are placed in areas of traffic on the roof to protect the insolation board.On the second floor roof area there is a Living Roof 4” deep system (Figure 3) that can be accessed but patients and visitors of the tower.


Sustainability Features

The design of the Patient Tower includes many environmentally sustainable aspects and is seeking Silver Certification from the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) building certification system. Patients will see elements such as a "green" roof, water cisterns and rain gardens. The design also incorporates a highly efficient energy system and insulation, as well as paints, carpets and furniture with low or no volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The tower will also will use low-flow plumbing in an effort to dampen its effects on the environment. See Figure 4.

  Sustainability Diagram  




Mechanical System

The Patient towers mechanical systems are centralized on the 5 floor of the tower which is reserved for mechanical systems. The air conditioning for the tower is controlled by 5 fan cooled AC units that are located on the 2nd floor roof these units are then connected to heat exchangers with in the building. For the towers heating source there are 4 steam boilers that will then distribute steam thought out the building to heat exchangers. All of these mechanical systems are run in the 5 mechanical chance ways that run out from the 5 floor.  The Stairwells are equipped with are 10000 CFM fax to maintain pressurization. 

Electrical/Lighting System

There are two 2000KVa transformers that are used to provide the power to the Patient tower from the local department of power. Since there will be critical care patients in this tower, the main power is backed up with a 2000KW generator feeding a 2000 KVA transformer. The lighting system is a 480/277V system with mainly Fluorescent lighting and some special lighting where needed. The Tower has both a 480/277 and a 240/120 electrical system that run thought out to allow the powering of the different equipment that is used in a hospital setting.

Fire Protection System

The Towers structural system is concrete so there is no need for the addition to a fire protective coating. As an active fire protective system the tower included an automatic sprinkler system.

Building Transportation

The transportation in the tower will be guided by the central stairway and the 6 elevators. Three are designated for visitors and the other three are designated for patient and staff use.

  Building Statistics II  
  Structural System  

The Foundations of the patient tower is set on piles, with pile caps and grade beams. Each column location has a range from 4 to 12 piles. The slab on grade for the tower is 5” with integrated slab pile caps in locations of high stress such as the elevator shaft and stair well. During the excavation for the new tower the existing basement and caissons supporting the connecting structure were exposed that will support a small portion of the new tower.
The column layout of the patient tower is very regular with a few variations on the 1st through 3rd floors. The bay spacing in the patient tower is mostly square 29’ x 29’ with a few exceptions as see in Figure 3 to the right. The main column size is 24” x 24” with vertical reinforcing of #11 bars numbering from 12 to 4 as they move up the structure. The vertical reinforcing is tied together with #4 bars placed every 18”. The structural system of the Patient Tower utilizes column capitals to resist punching shear with in the slab.
The Floor system for this patient tower is a 9 ½” 2-way flat plate. For the ground floor through the 4th floor the slab is 5000 psi concrete with the remaining floors at 4000 psi concrete. The flat plate system has both top and bottom steel reinforcing. The top steel placed at places of negative moment is typical notated with a number of #5 bars. The bottom reinforcing is a 2-way mat of #5 bars at 12” on center.
The lateral system in the new patient tower consists of seven 12” reinforced concrete shear walls. These walls are located in different locations thought out the building depicted to the right. This system of two shear wall cores resists lateral loads in both the north-south and east-west direction based on the orientation of the wall.


The Construction began this early this fall with the excavation of an existing driveway and entrance to the existing tower. Since this new patient tower is connecting to an existing structure the one end of the site access will be limited. With the site being built on the campus of the hospital there will be room for staging and equipment storage around the grounds without disturbing operation.

  Building Security  

There is not much in the way of building security. The lobby will be monitored by hospital staff. There are a few locations in the tower that will have secure access these are areas where median in is kept.


  User Note: While great efforts have been taken to provide accurate and complete information on the pages of CPEP, please be aware that the information contained herewith is considered a work-in-progress for this thesis project. Modifications and changes related to the original building designs and construction methodologies for this senior thesis project are solely the interpretation of Matthew Peyton. Changes and discrepancies in no way imply that the original design contained errors or was flawed. Differing assumptions, code references, requirements, and methodologies have been incorporated into this thesis project; therefore, investigation results may vary from the original design.