From: "Pickel, Joseph M." <pickeljm**At_Symbol_Here**ORNL.GOV>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] New Science Building- Things to Look Out For
Date: Fri, 17 Nov 2017 15:08:30 +0000
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU>
Message-ID: b8368c36f0f64d85954e7f798936c787**At_Symbol_Here**

Great discussion and great points-  lots of good advice.  Jeff's message hit a lot of the items I was going contribute so I'm just expanding on some of his in red below...

Also two additional things that have really helped us


Obviously by the responses, there is a lot of experience and expertise in CHAS in this area. Several of our folks presented talks at the last meeting regarding facility design, equipment selection, etc., and at another symposium in 2014 that covered similar topics-  you can find some of the presentations at the following links:






Joseph M. Pickel, Ph.D., NRCC-CCHO

Chair (2018)

ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety

Research Support Group Leader- Chemical Sciences

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

One Bethel Valley Road, MS 6209

Oak Ridge, TN 37831-6209

Phone: 865-576-0329

Email: pickeljm**At_Symbol_Here**



From: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU] On Behalf Of Jeffrey Lewin
Sent: Friday, November 17, 2017 9:35 AM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] New Science Building- Things to Look Out For


Random things I've picked up over 20 years as a lab supervisor (and now a year with EHS) with various levels of input in new buildings and renovating existing spaces:


  • The last 2 buildings we occupied had a central spine with labs lining that spine and the offices ringing the building.  This made future renovations and adding additional utilities easier.  Labs did not have windows to the outside; offices did.   Pickel: learned our lesson on the second building-  the service corridor (Jeff's central spine) is wonderful-  all materials come in and out through this hall and not the office corridor.  Most cylinders are kept in the hall so that they don't have to navigate or take up space in the lab, cutoffs for all utilities at each service entrance (5' wide double door by the way!) all individual labs to be isolated
  • If you have to enter a lab to access an office you'll be fighting food and drink issues forever. Pickel: we have shelves and coat hooks outside the (office) entrance to each lab that really helps with this issue
  • Avoid a building acid neutralization tank unless required by code.
  • Install 42" wide doors for lab access.
  • Install swipe card access on all lab doors. Pickel: agreed… also- try to get these hardwired- the battery based systems are difficult to maintain
  • Make sure loading dock matches the most common use; avoid truck heigh docks if you are unlikely to have truck deliveries.
  • Provide (secure) designated storage for personal items (coats, backpacks, etc.).
  • Think about building wide vs. individual laboratory vacuum; pumps and protective traps are accessible.
  • Keep sight lines clear in the laboratory.  We recently renovated a chemistry lab and installed fumehoods with clear walls allowing a TA to see all the hood activities with one glance.
  • If you have electrical "kill switches" i.e. that turn on/off all the power to the lab benches, avoid including the fumehoods.
  • Have designated collection points for hazardous and nonRCRA wastes, broken glass, trash, recycling, etc. designed into the layout.
  • Consider recessed fire extinguishers.
  • Consider installing a separate dedicated recirculating tempered water line for eyewashes/safety showers.
  • Avoid "open" shelving for equipment. It is an eyesore and increases unauthorized access.
  • If setting up a (micro)biology lab, avoid Class II type B (exhausted) biosafety cabinets unless you know you will need them.
  • Some architects/engineers will underestimate the number of electrical circuits and the number of outlets needed.
  • If there is going to be dining services or snack area in the building, design it into the plan rather than pigeonholing it in later.
  • Design furniture and lounging items into the building so as to avoid impinging on walkway and hallway space.
  • Consider a central gathering space that can double as a study space.
  • Think through gas cylinder delivery, storage, and returns.  Avoid using the loading dock for storage.  Review your fire code for separating oxidizing gasses from flammable gasses.
  • Think through where building recycling will be managed.
  • Think through how RCRA hazardous wastes and nonRCRA wastes will be managed. Pickel: we installed 4' hoods near the service entrance to each lab specifically for waste-  keeps it out of the ‘working hoods'


I'm sure I could come up more if I thought about it...




On Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 7:34 PM Melissa Anderson <mwanderson08**At_Symbol_Here**> wrote:

Hi Everyone,


We're in the planning process for a new science building (we're a two-year community college with a strong STEM reputation and a very small informal undergrad research program). Does anyone have any lessons learned or other recommendations as we start working with the architects when it comes to planning out our chemistry labs?




Melissa Anderson

Chemistry Instructor

Pasadena City College

--- For more information about the DCHAS-L e-mail list, contact the Divisional secretary at secretary**At_Symbol_Here** Follow us on Twitter **At_Symbol_Here**acsdchas


Jeff Lewin

Chemical Safety Officer

Compliance, Integrity, and Safety

Environmental Health and Safety

Michigan Technological University

Houghton, MI 49931


O 906-487.3153

--- For more information about the DCHAS-L e-mail list, contact the Divisional secretary at secretary**At_Symbol_Here** Follow us on Twitter **At_Symbol_Here**acsdchas

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