When healthcare provider Busamed set out to build a crop of new private hospitals across South Africa, it took WSP along for the ride. We were commissioned to provide civil, structural and building services on four facilities, including the group’s new hospital in Modderfontein, a suburb of Johannesburg.
This 240-bed, three-storey hospital is now up and running, and offers a wide range of medical, surgical, day and pediatric services. Facilities include general, cardiac and neonatal intensive care units, plus high-care, labor and maternity wards.
Containing the Radiation
During the design process, the hospital’s radiology practice received particular attention. As well as MRI and CT scanners, and eight operating theatres, it features an oncology unit with two dedicated oncology bunkers – special rooms for treating cancer patients using a machine called a Variant Linear Accelerator.
These bunkers have unique specifications to ensure the radiation used is contained, posing challenges for construction and budget. After a value engineering process, in collaboration with the University of Pretoria, our team found a solution that saved significant cost and time. High-density concrete slab and lead bricks were replaced with standard density, high-reinforced concrete slab and mild steel, allowing us to achieve the desired impact with greater efficiency.
Site’s Geology Creates Challenges
The sloping site’s unique geology also called for a nuanced approach to foundation design, resulting in a dual solution in which the portion of the building on the upper terrace is founded on friction augur piles and the lower on reinforced concrete pad footings. The building has a brick façade with concrete cantilever canopies.
As well as this 20,000m2 facility, Busamed’s new Paardevlei Private Hospital in the Western Cape is also fully operational. The other two projects in the program – Harrismith and Bloemfontein private hospitals – are under construction.