SST Planners

Strategic Science and Technology Planners


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Selected Projects
(click on thumbnails to see larger images)



National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, Maryland

Biomedical Research Laboratory Building

The primary mission of the building is to pursue biomedical research in areas such as HIV and Cancer. The large open light-filled laboratories were designed to respond to multiple research missions in infectious disease. Phase I includes 85,000 gsf of laboratory space and administrative and conference center support.

The labs are generally open and very flexible to facilitate teamwork to support the research and development objectives of the NIH.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2000
85,000 gross square feet

Architect: HLM Design
MEP Engineers: RMF Engineering, Inc.






Piedmont Virginia Community College
Charlottesville, VA

Kluge-Moses Science Building

The new 34,000 sf Kluge-Moses Science Building allows PVCC to train health care professionals in the region with a variety of specialized laboratory and classroom resources. It houses state-of-the-art instructional laboratories for chemistry, biology, microbiology & biotechnology (with UVA hospital), gross anatomy and nursing that includes specialized spaces such as advanced simulation labs for radiography, nursing critical care, emergency medical services and surgical technology. ADA workstations have been fully integrated into the design of the student workstations in all teaching labs

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2010
34,000 gross square feet

Architects: The Lukmire Partnership
MEP Engineers: R.G. Vanderweil Engineers LLP
Photographs by Eric Taylor İ EricTaylorPhoto.com








Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins University Hospital
Baltimore, Maryland

Robert H and Clarice Smith Building

This new building for the Wilmer Eye Institute provides new space for research, clinical and residency programs in ophthalmology. The facility is currently designed with five floors of flexible, open-design laboratories to support a variety of research programs. A five-story atrium will encourage interaction between researchers, provide a large gathering area for lectures and events, and will bring natural light into the laboratories and offices. Bridges across the atrium will connect laboratories and office suites, while transparent glass walls in the laboratories will provide a visual connection to the atrium and offices. Interactive spaces within and near the atrium will enhance a sense of community among Wilmer researchers.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2009
202,000 gross square feet

Architects: Wilmot Sanz & Ayers Saint Gross
MEP Engineers: RMF Engineering










The University of Virginia
Charlottesville, Virginia

Bioengineering and Medical Sciences Building

This new building is intended to relieve a shortfall of research space and to consolidate the entire biomedical engineering department under one roof. Other key elements include consolidation of the Pathology Department from several campus locations to co-locate much of their research and clinical space in a single location. Also included in this new building is the Cardiovascular Research Center, and Comparative Medicine which manages all vivarium spaces on the UVA Medical School campus.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: Complex consisting of MR5 and MR6: 2009
338,000 gross square feet (both buildings)

Architects: HDR/Kallman, McKinnell & Wood Architects
MEP Engineers: HDR Engineering






Chesapeake College
Wye Mills, Maryland

Talbot Science Laboratory Renovation

The renovation of a one story 70ıs era science building provided the opportunity for new multi-departmental labs with integrated Audio-Visual technology for the life and physical sciences. The renovation of Talbot Hall at Chesapeake College used PKAL principles to foster hands-on learning, promote student-faculty interaction, make scientific instrumentation, equipment and services accessible, and bring natural light into the lab spaces. The core of the building contains a central meeting area flanked by 5 multi-disciplinary labs with associated lab support spaces to maximize interaction.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2008
25,000 gross square feet

Architects: Marshall Craft
MEP Engineers: Gipe Associates, Inc.








Montgomery College
Germantown, Maryland

Organic Chemistry Lab Renovation

This renovation of a computer lab into a new state-of-the-art organic chemistry lab relieves a shortfall of teaching space in an older classroom building. The design places the hoods around the perimeter of a "U" shaped student/faculty work area. With this design, faculty can easily interact with students. The excellent sight lines facilitate the effective use of the centrally located scientific instruments, the demo table and the AV Smart Table. Technology is fully integrated into the lab. Storage cabinets are lined with whiteboards to maximize casework functionality.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2008
1500 net square feet

Architects: Burt Hill
MEP Engineers: Burt Hill








Belmont University
Nashville, TN

The Inman Center, College of Health Sciences & Nursing





This new $20 million dollar facility will be multi-departmental and will include labs for learning that simulate acute care, skills, maternity, pediatric and physical therapy environments. The building will be named after its primary benefactor and will provide an excellent nursing and health sciences education to students who will graduate into a demanding and challenging field.

The lab programming process included an extensive benchmarking study of health care and nursing facilities nationally. The lessons-learned from these programs, combined with the leadership of Belmontıs administration and departmental faculty, resulted in a carefully tailored facility design best suited to the long-term requirements of the university to be responsive to growing healthcare needs nationally.

The Nursing Acute Skills Lab for example simulates a real critical care setting for an optimal learning experience. Each bed provides medical services typically found in a hospital setting. The lab also has complete AV facilities for in-lab demonstrations and recitations with the hands-on bed stations immediately available around the room perimeter.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided complete laboratory programming and planning serices.


Completion Date: 2007
71,000 gross square feet plus connecting bridge

Architects: Earl Swensson Associates
MEP Engineers: I.C.Thomasson Associates








George Washington University
Northern Virginia Campus

Solar Energy Research Lab Renovation

The lab is designed for the development of solar energy storage systems. An extensive overhead grid system enables development of novel solar simulation testing systems.

The renovated laboratory has new and upgraded MEP services, new casework and equipment, and provides flexible research laboratory space for Electrochemistry, Fuel Cell Testing, Solar Simulation, Optics, Spectroscopy and Fabrication.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2009
2000 gross square feet (about 1600 nsf)

MEP Engineers: R.G. Vanderweil Engineers LLP








The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR)
Rockville, Maryland

TIGR Building No. 5

SST Planners supported TIGR, a not for profit biomedical research center, in programming and planning a new laboratory as part of their master plan to expand their complex to facilitate the hiring of approximately 300 new researchers to employ new technologies. The 125,000 gross square foot laboratory will be situated on four levels and accommodate these additional researchers. Specialized laboratories include micro-array, proteomics, FACScan, cell culture, and bioinformatics.

The building has been planned to be economically efficient to operate, flexible to use and reconfigure, and to enhance scientific interaction. Workstation and computer based space on each floor are clustered in a zone with an efficient recirculated, air conditioning system. The general wet research labs are also clustered and generically planned, while the specialized labs are customized to accommodate unique instrumentation. Though the building is not LEEDS rated, energy efficiency in the design of the building and the systems infrastructure played a significant role in the planning process.

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: Spring 2004
125,000 gross square feet

Architect: Leo A Daly
MEP Engineers: Vanderweil Engineers








The United States Geological Survey
Reston, Virginia

J W Powell Building

The J. W. Powell Headquarters Building in Reston, Virginia houses the Geologic Division and the Regional Water Resources Division of the U. S. Geological Survey. Included in these two divisions are the Eastern Mineral resources Survey Team, the Eastern Energy Resources Survey team, the Global Change/Hazards Team, the National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Team, the Coastal and Marine Program, and the Bureau of Regional Research. Some specific goals identified include:

  • Will not exceed 6,500 nsm of laboratory and laboratory support space
  • Re-use, as much as possible, existing walls, columns, and shafts
  • Avoid excessively or individually planned or customized laboratories
  • Laboratory and laboratory support types include chemistry, wet instrument, dry instrument, dry prep, microscope, computer, mechanical, photographic, and biological.


We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2001
200,000 gross square feet

Architect: Burt, Hill, Kosar, Rittelmann Associates
MEP Engineers: Burt, Hill, Kosar, Rittelmann Associates
Photographs are courtesy of BHKR Associates






Acadia University
Nova Scotia, Canada

Centre for Life Sciences: Botanical Research Centre

This state-of-the-art building is dedicated to the environmental research of the Acadia ecosystem. Included in this research building are nine research greenhouse spaces, student research, faculty research for plant genetics and plant physiology, growth chambers, a conservatory, fern house, herbarium storage, a monitoring garden, and storage and display of the Universityıs zoological collection. In addition, this new complex includes an auditorium, seminar rooms, offices and other support spaces needed to complement the Universityıs research efforts.

The following is quoted from the Acadia University Web Site: "The new Centre for Life Sciences will be a focal point of creative, interdisciplinary learning and research. The talents and ideas of the world's leading architects and most innovative laboratory designers - Robert A.M. Stern Architects of New York, and SST Planners of Washington DC- will make the new complex the most productive learning environment imaginable to support the development and sharing of knowledge in the life sciences. The building will complement the advanced Environmental Sciences, Research Centre and Campus Meeting Place, and will link to Acadia's network of coastal field stations. Together, this critical mass of infrastructure will provide the analytical and laboratory tools necessary to support the teaching and research needs of faculty, and the learning needs of students. The design of the new Centre for Life Sciences embodies the latest thinking in laboratory design and is driven by the following 21st century principles:

  • The facility will be designed to maximize flexibility
  • Accessibility will be a key design feature
  • The design will facilitate students' participation in primary research by designating space to support their work
  • The facility and the Academy will foster and support interaction among faculty and students in an interdisciplinary mode of operation
  • The new complex will be a "green" facility, maximizing use of renewable materials and utilizing systems which will minimize life-cycle costs."

We were the consulting lab planners for this project and provided laboratory programming, lab design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration. We also recently provided upgrades to several selected labs to improve utilization.

Completion Date: 2002 (new construction) and 2015 (lab renovations)
56,400 gross square feet

Architect: Robert A.M. Stern
Photographs are courtesy of RAMSA






West Virginia University School of Medicine
Morgantown, WV

Biomedical & Cancer Research Center

SST Planners provided programming and laboratory & vivarium design services for a new research laboratory building at the West Virginia University Health Sciences Center. The new facility is part of a masterplan initiative for a major expansion of cancer and neuroscience research on the Morgantown campus. The facility will also include updated core labs and link to other research assets at the Health Science Center. Each floor of the project was programmed for a different scenario:

  • Level 3 was programmed for an established known research group, the Sensory Neuroscience Research Center, and the design team was encouraged to tailor the space to a specific situation.
  • Level 2 was intended for as yet to be named investigators and new recruits and needed to be highly flexible and somewhat generic.
  • Level 1 was completed as shell space, to be completed as Level 2 was occupied, and would most likely emerge as a version of Level 2.

The lab planning process included extensive consideration of applicable research facility prototypes and included site visits to peer institutions and case study reviews. The result of the process was a consensus among current investigators that an open lab concept provides working flexibility and a level of interaction not achievable in the existing cellular facilities. The building is expected to establish a new lab design model for subsequent project phases at WVU.

SST Planners, consulting lab planners for this project, provided the laboratory programming, laboratory design, casework drawings and laboratory related construction administration.

Completion Date: 2008 (Levels 2 & 3) and 2009 (Level 1) and 2010 & 2014 (vivarium addition and renovation)
114,000 gross square feet plus vivaria

Architect: Stanley Beaman & Sears, Inc.
MEP Engineers: Newcomb & Boyd Engineers








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