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No room for error. That’s what forensics spaces require. High-tech, meticulously planned facilities are key in this vital part of our criminal justice system. They must be designed to allow for the flow of information, but limit the transition of hazardous particles, allowing world-class science to take place.
The 46,800-square-foot Medical Examiners and Forensic Center for Pinellas County, Florida features the latest in forensic science and state-of-the-art medical examiner’s facilities. The building includes an administrative area for the medical examiner, an investigation unit, an autopsy and morgue facility and a toxicology laboratory.
46,800 square feet
5 autopsy stations
Energy Center for 24-hour emergency operation
in association with McClaren, Wilson & Lawrie
The Vision and Design
The Center includes laboratory administration, an evidence-control unit, a forensic chemistry unit, an arson unit and a latent prints lab. Stringent regulatory and code requirements have set the standard for forensic science facility design and the emergence of infectious diseases in the criminal community has created the need to develop airtight facilities. The building’s design accommodates viral and bacterial controls procedures and hazardous waste containment. A special layered and sealed membrane wall provides security within the facility and resinous coatings are part of floor and wall finishes to prevent cross-contamination. HKS applied the same materials that NASA uses to achieve a sterile environment in their cleanroom facilities. Additionally, specially engineered stainless steel ductwork, air filtration and exhaust fans were installed.
Architecture for Justice Knowledge Community – Justice Facilities Review
American Institute of Architects