• John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford

    The John Radcliffe Hospital is the largest hospital in Oxfordshire, covering 66 acres and situated in Headington, about three miles east of Oxford city centre. Darke & Taylor was contracted to design and install the electrical services, including a structured cabling network for a new standalone administration department. This network then had to be connected to separate hubs on the John Radcliffe campus, located in the JR Welcome Centre.

    John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford

Challenges

Limited containment: The building design called for all the cabling to run underneath false floors. This meant a huge amount of cabling, electrical, mechanical and data, to fit into a tight space.

‘Like a Tardis inside’: Building 622 was a small building on the outside, but with a huge amount going on inside. Darke & Taylor (D&T) had to work alongside a large number of other trades owing to the specialist nature of the build.

Tight timescale: Due to the John Radcliffe (JR) being an exceptionally busy hospital, access to the site was limited at times; i.e. no parking was available to contractors on hospital grounds and deliveries were only permitted during specific times… all allied to a very tight timetable.

Link cabling: The hospital required the fibre optic and copper voice cables to be installed from the new build to JR Welcome Centre which involved having to cross a busy hospital car park.

Solutions

Design & conquer: Darke & Taylor (D&T) was given the containment drawings at the tender stage and foresaw the space issue. Consequently, a specialist containment system for the delicate 1,000+ Cat6A data cables was designed to allow them to fit separately but alongside the other trades.

Spot-on communication: The need to take up the floors to pull through the Cat6A cables would result in restricted access for the other trades. Hence, D&T had to be particularly careful in liaising with SDC (the main contractor) over timings.

Heavy manpower: The tight timetable and need to fit in around other trades so as not to cause hold-ups, meant that D&T had up to 40 people working through the night and weekends on this project.

Copper car park: SDC installed new duct work across the car park out of normal business hours. The new voice and fibre optic cables were then installed by D&T during the evenings to allow the car park to be partially closed and then routed through the JR Welcome Centre over a weekend when it was unoccupied.

Gallery

“Building 622 was a small building on the outside, but with a huge amount going on inside. Darke & Taylor had to work alongside a large number of other trades owing to the specialist nature of the build.”

Technical overview

This project was a Cat6A network installation for a brand-new building (Building 622) on the John Radcliffe (JR) campus. The building had two distinct uses, part-hospital, part-university, each with a user group that had distinct IT and security requirements.

Therefore, to ensure effective segregation, D&T installed two separate and easily identifiable network infrastructures. All cabling was colour-coded with the internal fibre optic cabling routed back to a central communications room and, from there, the system was interfaced back to the main IT infrastructure hub in the John Radcliffe.

Project details

CLIENTJohn Radcliffe Hospital
MAIN CONTRACTORSDC
PROJECT DURATION10 months

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