Buffalo, New York

Owner: Albany Molecular Research Institute (AMRI)

Project Value: $13 million

Completed: April 2015

Architect: CHA and EYP Architecture & Engineering

Lab: 36,000 sq. ft. of BSL-2 space

The Conventus building is a 7-story center for collaborative medicine that houses clinical, educational and research components with laboratory and office space, and conference rooms in a synergistic environment. Within Conventus, AMRI, with its partner PerkinElmer, resides on the entire 7th floor using 45,000 sq. ft. of space.

This fast-track project was added after designs were complete, adding an additional floor to the structure. After the core and shell construction work was advanced enough, the AMRI fit-out began in October 2014. The space had a self-contained mechanical room that was built to support air handling, lab air, RODI (Reverse Osmosis De-Ionized) water and a boiler. Even with the quick pace of this fit-out work, one component had to be completed earlier. The owner required their cold room and walk-in freezer to be up and running early, allowing them to transfer over $1 billion of biological specimens. Not only did our team have the space operational by February 28th, they also coordinated with the owner to ensure clear access for their transfer amidst ongoing construction.

In addition to the structural complexity, 36,000 sq. ft. of the space is a Biosafety Level 2 laboratory with air, vacuum systems, lab gasses, oxygen and the RODI water system. The space was also built for flexibility integrating overhead service panels for med gasses, power and data. Rather than stationary floor installation, these modular quick connect ceiling systems allow the lab to easily be reconfigured or upgraded in the future. The space also includes two conference rooms equipped with videoconferencing. AMRI’s mission is for early-stage drug discovery and development for pharmaceutical companies.

Construction was completed ontime on April 1, 2015. Additionally, the budget was maintained with a final cost of $13 million.