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Sharing lessons learned is an integral part of delivering an exceptional customer experience, but since every situation is unique, sometimes just bringing other extensive experiences to the table will serve our client and the project with the best possible solution. This was the case during a 103,500-square-foot hospital renovation in Brandon, Florida, where the project team pulled in JE Dunn’s national MEP experts to explore unconventional, innovative options—and it paid off.

To complete an expansion to the existing hospital, the project required a tie-in to existing sanitary systems. In the pre-planning investigations of existing systems, it was discovered that the sanitary infrastructure shown on the drawings was much deeper than anticipated and in a less-than-ideal condition. Rather than typical underground sanitary depths, the existing main was 18 feet below grade—a big problem since it routed under the heart of the hospital. When taking a closer look at the integrity of the system, the team found that the pipe itself was severely compromised in places and needed to be repaired in multiple locations. After learning the conditions were much different than anticipated, construction activities were at risk until the team could find a solution.

With traditional construction methods, the next steps would have been to methodically take over sections of the hospital and excavate/replace the piping—which to hospital operations, would be catastrophic. Leaning on the experience and advice of fellow JE Dunn professionals, one of our in-house MEP experts proposed a potential solution and introduced the possibility of using Insituform®, a trenchless cured-in-place pipe (CIPP) that could restore the structural integrity of pipelines. “CIPP solutions are perfect to use in areas that are not accessible for traditional dig and replace methods,” said National Engineering Services Director Dave Barber. “The conditions at the hospital made it the perfect candidate for the technology.”

“Rather than boring out the area, Insituform® is essentially an expanding sock that gets placed inside compromised pipe, or in this case, the packed soil. When the sock is in place, hot water is sent through it, activating resin to create a hard shell. This non-invasive, anti-corrosive method is a fraction of the cost of traditional solutions and improves reliability while increasing flow capacity without having to entirely replace the pipes,” said Barber.

As part of the CIPP process, a certified/trained CIPP contractor first performed a 360-degree survey scan of the entire sanitary main and determined the critical areas. This information was then used to diagnose problems throughout the entire system and develop the plan to complete all necessary repairs.

By starting the Insituform® procedures, we were able to perform an advanced analysis to pin-point critical areas needing action, thus minimizing hospital impacts and project down time as well as saving the client valuable dollars. Without JE Dunn’s collaborative approach and ability to tap into a national team of MEP professionals, traditional methods might have been required, resulting in a very different outcome. They were a key part of the solution that helped the team deliver the hospital expansion with limited disruption to facility operations—a central goal of any healthcare project.