Forensic Science NI - laboratory

Forensic Science NI appointed CPD Construction Division to lead the delivery of its new laboratory building at Seapark.

CPD role

Image of Forensic Science NI laboratory building
Forensic Science NI laboratory building

CPD Construction Division successfully project managed the delivery of the new laboratory building for Forensic Science Northern Ireland (FSNI). 

The new building provides FSNI with a world class facility that will enhance the quality of the evidence that it can provide - transforming the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland.

Design features

The £12m building is the first bespoke forensic science facility to be built in Northern Ireland. It provides a high care environment to enable FSNI to deliver the very latest generation of forensic services.

Image of dark room at FSNI laboratory

The building has been designed to support efficient workflow and to increase productivity across FSNI’s operations.

Benefits such as improvements in turnaround times are expected to be realised as a result of detailed planning of floor layouts and functionality.

The building uses a very complex air handling system to manage the risk of cross contamination which is essential for today’s ultra-sensitive forensic techniques such as DNA recovery and examination.

The internal finishes and material choices also support a robust cleaning regime critical to a forensic environment.

Image shows FSNI solar panels

The building has been built to the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) rating of ‘Excellent’, which is a recognised measure of the building's outstanding environmental and sustainability performance.

It utilises rain water harvesting, photovoltaic cells and a combined heat and power unit to provide both electricity and heat which plays a major part in the air management functions.

Image of FSNI storage for evidence

CPD provided FSNI with a wide range of services - including assistance to develop the brief, project managing the entire scheme and the procurement and contract management of an integrated supply team to design and construct the works.

Project outcome

CPD applied Northern Ireland Public Procurement Policy and the Public Contracts Regulations to ensure that best value for money was achieved. 

FSNI facilities are independently assessed by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

During a recent audit of the new laboratory UKAS’ lead assessor was very impressed with the design, functionality and build quality of the facility, stating: “There is no other facility like this in the UK. This is the standard that all other labs will now have to attain if they want to ‘compete’ with FSNI”. 

FSNI are delighted with their new facility and are planning to use CPD’s services again for another project on the site. They have recognised that the knowledge, skills and expertise provided by CPD added real value to the success of the project.

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