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Stewart Engineering defends proposed hospital design concept

Stewart Engineering defends proposed  hospital design concept

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Stewart Engineering Ltd has come out in defence of their proposed hospital design concept, after persons accused the consulting engineers of taking the hospital design from a Facebook game called Farmville.

The company, whose principal is Glenford Stewart and which includes his son Johann Stewart, was contracted by the New Democratic Party (NDP) to design a modern medical facility.{{more}}

After the drawings of the facility were released by the NDP, persons, via the social medium Facebook, placed the drawing alongside a lookalike structure, which they claimed was from the Farmville game. Apart from the photo, a video also surfaced depicting the drawing as a Farmville building.

On Wednesday, during a town hall meeting at NDP Headquarters in Richmond Hill, Johann who is the consulting senior civil structural engineer/architect at Stewart Engineering Ltd said that the company’s drawing depicts phase one of the capital project, a drawing that can be found nowhere online.

“You’ve seen photos and displays on the Internet. I would like to say that this concept design is totally original and there is no place on the Internet you can find this concept design. Everything is designed from scratch,” said Johann.

“You can look, you will never find this exact type of design on the web. We know of the person who took a photo of the back view of the presentation, Photoshopped it, put Farmville on it. This is so comical; the animals that they put on the photo are taller than the building, so you know it is totally fake,” said the architect/engineer.

He added, “we consider this highly dishonest and disrespectful and something to defame a company that has been adding to projects and roads in St Vincent and the Grenadines for a long time.”

Explaining the design, Johann said that after careful consultation and research, they came up with the design which if constructed, will become the first ‘green building’ in the country.

He said that the main part of the building is made up of hospital administration and other support departments, while the wing areas are the medical department, wards, the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Department and special diagnostics departments.

He said that in making the building the first green building in the country, they designed the building to be economical and user friendly, while having proper functionality and durability. It has also been designed to be comfortable and energy efficient.

He added that the front of the building will provide easy access to the public from the road and there will be parking areas for the patients and visitors on one side and for hospital staff on the other side.

“The front area of the building is made for relaxation and for persons to have easy access of being picked up”, said Johann who noted that at the current hospital, there is a problem with pick-up and drop-off if rain is coming.

“The hospital has a courtyard for persons who eat at a cafeteria and a play area with a children ward, so children can have sense of comfort and an area to play with parents. There is also a provision for air ambulance services and elevator access on the roof, which goes to the emergency department.”

“A project of this magnitude has to be done in phases. Phase two will take care of other support buildings,” revealed Johann.

According to Glenford, the ground floor of the hospital will be 70,650 square feet, the first floor 74,457 square feet and the ambulance area 1070 square feet. The helicopter pad will be 4,000 square feet. The total proposed building area is 149,987 square feet.

“So, phase one is looking at a 150,000 square feet and they are looking at an initial land area of 10 acres, while the consultants recommended three acres.”

The older Stewart (Glenford) said that his company is, “no fly-by-night company and the outgoing government knows that.”

“Over two years ago we started gathering information and consulting with professionals around the world over the design of a state-of-the-art hospital,” explained Glenford, who stressed that the family hails from the Grenadines and considers health care an extremely important issue because of the difficulty of Grenadines people to get proper health care.

He said that he has known persons in the Grenadines who have died because of lack of transportation, “and so the design of this hospital, we took into consideration how we can get people quickly from the Grenadines and from the greater distances…hence the design incorporating a helicopter pad.”

Glenford noted that in a World Bank report that was released in 2014, it was specifically noted that a helicopter service is important, as a number of persons live outside the quick response area.

He revealed that in designing the structure, staff was sent to California to consult with people who know about building and managing hospitals, while they also engaged consultants from Washington, Toronto, Cambridge and Trinidad.

“…when we design something, don’t go and take our design and botch it up and say it come from some Farmville nonsense, rubbish”, said Glenford who added that a technician at a local television station took the design and, “botch it and say it came from Farmville.”

Glenford added, “he will pay a price, you know the price he will pay? Self-shame and self-pity.”

He added that the design is a comprehensive design, speeded up after instruction from Leader of the NDP Arnhim Eustace. Glenford added also that it is not his company’s job to find money to build the structure.(LC)

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