Patient care made easy

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A purpose-built manufacturing and design facility constructed by Clelands Construction Ltd won the Taranaki-based builder the Seismic Industrial/Utility Project Award in the Registered Master Builders 2006 Commercial Project Awards, in association with PlaceMakers.

The winning project, located in the shadow of Mt Taranaki in New Plymouth, was built for Howard Wright Ltd, leaders in manufacturing and selling
state-of-the-art hospital beds and other patient handling equipment.

Now 50 years old, the company decided it was time to consolidate from being located in five separate buildings to relocate under one roof in a purpose-built building.
“Our clients’ desire was to create a simple, high quality, eco-friendly industrial facility with emphasis on staff comfort, efficiency and working environment,” Martin Stephens of Clelands Construction says.

The competition judges noted: “The nature of Howard Wright’s work is one of precision, and it was appropriate that this be reflected in the design and construction of the new building.”
The site is strategically located in Bell Block on the arterial route between New Plymouth city and the airport. It is handy to the suburban shopping centre for staff but, more importantly, to the airport and on the main trucking route to enable efficient transportation of inward and outward goods.

The factory has natural light through translucent roof lights. North-facing glass provides solar energy to heat the building. This energy is stored in the exposed ground concrete insulated floor that runs the full length of the administration building.

In addition to the floor, precast concrete walls between the administration area and factory store energy as well as provide acoustic separation between the two main zones.
The passive solar design is augmented with gas-fired heated water run in the slab. Excessive solar gain is limited by the use of aluminium louvres, dimensioned to admit winter sun but to exclude summer sun.

The management philosophy is unusual in that the owner of the company does not have a separate office, but works in the same open area as the staff. A small interview room has been provided for confidentiality when needed.

In summing up the property the competition judges said: “The use of high-calibre materials and quality workmanship is widely evident, and this open-plan, functional building has helped the client become more efficient in its day-to-day business processes.”

Clelands Construction had 40 tradespeople plus consultants working on the project at the peak of construction, who were delighted by the win and the opportunity to benchmark the quality of their work.

“Achieving success in these Awards has greatly assisted our marketing efforts with potential clients. Premium industry recognition like this provides huge credibility to clients who place their trust in you,” Mr Stephens says.
“It differentiates RMBs from others in the industry. The competition is nothing but positive for your business. Don’t be afraid of being judged by your peers.”