St. Peter’s University Hospital in New Brunswick, N.J., is a 478-bed teaching hospital serving New Jersey since 1907. The hospital treats more than 30,000 inpatients and more than 200,000 outpatients annually. Many of these patients are brought to the hospital on wheeled stretchers and gurneys, and then transferred to wheeled beds for diagnosis and treatment. The emergency room floor must not only bear the weight of the heavy beds, but must also remain perfectly flat, smooth and level, to facilitate ongoing movement of the beds from one location to another.
St. Peter’s decided to completely renovate the entire emergency room. This included replacement of the floor from front door to back wall, an area of approximately 20,000 square feet. Because of the constant flow of traffic, it was impossible to replace the entire floor at once, so the project needed to be divided into smaller areas that could be resurfaced without interrupting patient care. The challenge became not only making the floor level within each smaller area, but also making each smaller area level with all of those surrounding it.
The solution proposed by The Gillespie Organization was Ardex V 1200, a cement-based self-leveling underlayment available in the US from Ardex Americas. Gillespie is an authorized Ardex Level Master Dealer, and has many years of experience with installation and maintenance of the product line, said the company.
The Plan of Attack
Because the emergency room was being completely renovated, it was necessary to coordinate installation of the floor with the efforts of other trades such as plumbers, electricians and carpenters. In order to accomplish this, the project was divided into five phases, with each phase representing a different surface area of the emergency room. The area was divided into 20 smaller areas of approximately 1,000 square feet each. One smaller area was completed before work on another area was begun to avoid interference with the normal operation of the emergency room. Because Gillespie worked closely with St. Peter’s and coordinated each phase of the project with the other trades, the entire project was completed precisely on schedule.
Plumbers, electricians, carpenters and other trades people were scheduled to work during normal business hours. Gillespie flooring specialists worked at night in order to avoid disruption of the operations of the other trades. Because Ardex V 1200 underlayment is not only self-leveling but also fast curing, the floor could be safely accessed by other trades people when they began their work the next morning. More importantly, Ardex V 1200 has the strength and endurance to support the weight of multiple moving beds and other heavy and often mobile hospital equipment used in the emergency room.
For St. Peter’s University Hospital, Forbo sheet vinyl was laid in patterns over the Ardex V 1200. The result was a perfectly flat smooth floor over which beds could be wheeled easily. According to John Gillespie, Gillespie Group vice president, operations, “For a project of this nature, careful planning and coordination were critical. The project turned out to be a success, and our client was delighted with the finished project.”
For more information, visit gillespie-group.com.