This project was unique based on incorporating facility requirements set forth by Mid-Florida Biologicals to design a 50 bed donor and processing facility based on the collection and processing of plasma for future medical research and development of medicines.
The core of the facility’s operation is the comfort of the plasma donors followed by the processing of the plasma. Part of the comfort included the aesthetics of the facility. Accent walls were painted with earth tones which matched the colors found in the sheet linoleum flooring and carpet tiles. These colors were complimented by the cherry veneer custom millwork and wood doors. In addition, privacy was provided using etched window film, roller shades, and glass ceiling high wall panels.
Once the plasma has been collected from the donor it is sent immediately to the lab where it is placed in a specially designed container for future shipment and placed in the freezer and lowered to a temperature of -40 degrees Fahrenheit. To process, collect, and store 350 units of plasma each day, the facility required the installation of a three compartment, 36 ft long by 14 ft wide, freezer with redundant compressors and an emergency power supply to ensure the plasma maintains the required temperature.
Due to the placement of the facility within an existing two story retail center, the equipment required to power and cool the freezer required placement on the center’s roof. Cangene Plasma Resources was built on the lower floor requiring all refrigeration piping, gas piping, and electrical feeds for the roof level condensers and 80KV emergency generator to be chased, on off hours, through occupied tenant spaces located directly above the facility.
To further complicate the construction, the existing structural framing of the retail center was not adequate to support the loads of the new roof top equipment. Each structural steel joist, beam and column directly below the roof top equipment was required to be strengthened with the addition of bracing and beams to carry the additional weight. This work required existing walls and ceilings to be removed for access and replaced upon the completion of steel modification, again during off hours to limit any disturbance to existing tenants.
Upon the completion of the freezer equipment and added support, a multitude of tests were performed, (while clothed in Arctic parkas, gloves, and face protection), to confirm the freezers sub-cooling capabilities met the requirements to process plasma and allow the facility to successfully open for business as scheduled.