Darwin Group completes final phase of Welsh COVID-19 ward

02nd Mar

Modular construction specialist Darwin Group has handed over the keys to the brand-new Lakeside Wing at University Hospital of Wales (UHW) in Cardiff, after working 24/7 through lockdown to complete the second and final phase of construction works ahead of schedule.

Delivering an additional 234 beds, the completion of the Southern wing of the site brings the total capacity of the modular building to 400 patients – with a further 200 beds made available across Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s (CAVUHB) other sites, meeting COVID-19 requirements set out by the Welsh Government.

This milestone now means that patients suffering from the coronavirus will be able to be moved into the facility immediately, following a thorough project handover.

The £33 million build, which was directed by CAVUHB, has been delivered by Darwin Group in just 20 weeks, owing largely to the Shropshire firm’s modular construction techniques.

This enabled the firm to carry out much of the construction process off-site and saw it install a total of 280 building modules in just 70 days.

Darwin Group were appointed by CAVUHB in September 2020 to deliver the U-shaped modular wing in anticipation of a second spike of coronavirus cases which have subsequently triggered the need for a further lockdown.

The high-quality, temporary build will support UHW throughout the remainder of the pandemic, with plans already being drawn up for it to be repurposed in due course.

Darwin Group’s in-house team provided a unique turnkey service across all stages of the project from start to finish.

Charles Pierce, managing director of Darwin Group, said: “The delivery of this facility has only heightened in significance following the latest peak in coronavirus cases and the subsequent lockdown we now find ourselves in. Darwin Group has therefore worked tirelessly throughout night and day to ensure that the patients who need these additional beds will be able to access them.

“We are supported by a fantastic in-house team of designers, engineers, and various construction professionals who have come together to deliver each phase of this project within extremely tight time constraints. As a proud British company, I am delighted that we have been able to deliver on CAVUHB’s requirements and hope that UHW’s new build helps them through these difficult and unprecedented times.”

Len Richards, chief executive, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, added: “A lot of work has gone into the planning, build and operational running of the Lakeside Wing. I extend my thanks to all of my colleagues from the Health Board working on this project as well as the contractors who have worked so diligently on site, ensuring minimal disruption was made for our staff, local residents and our patients.

“We will continue to monitor and transfer patients across to the Wing from our main site as safely and comfortably as possible as we continue to navigate our way through this pandemic.”

While temporary constructions such as the Lakeside Wing are something Darwin Group can offer, the modular construction specialist remains committed to the quality and longevity of its builds. Darwin Group offers financial payment plans and assists with funding applications to ensure client aspirations and budget constraints align.

For more information, visit: www.darwingroupltd.co.uk or cavuhb.nhs.wales/uhw-lakeside-wing

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