November 23, 2020

Coronavirus: How NHS Nightingale was built in just nine days

The UK’s newest, and largest, hospital facility is preparing to open its doors to take in coronavirus patients needing intensive care treatment.

East London’s ExCeL exhibition centre, which normally plays host to lifestyle shows, expos and conferences, has been converted into the temporary NHS Nightingale hospital, with space for 4,000 beds.

Architects and engineers from BDP, the firm that helped convert the centre, were part of the planning team given the task of creating the life-saving facility.

BDP Principal James Hepburn said the scale and timeframe for the construction were unlike previous healthcare projects and architects were coming up with designs almost as building needed to get under way.

The framework for individual bed bays were made from material usually used to make exhibition stands – because it is lightweight and could be constructed quickly.

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