Design for flexibility | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED BD+C: Healthcare | v4 - LEED v4

Design for flexibility

Possible 1 point


Conserve resources associated with the construction and management of buildings by designing for flexibility and ease of future adaptation and for the service life of components and assemblies.


Increase building flexibility and ease of adaptive use over the life of the structure by employing at least three of the following strategies.

  • Use interstitial space. Design distribution zone utility systems and equipment including HVAC, plumbing, electrical, information technology, medical gases, and life safety systems to serve the occupied zones and have the capacity to control multiple zones in clinical spaces.

  • Provide programmed soft space, such as administration or storage, equal to at least 5% of departmental gross area (DGA). Locate soft space adjacent to clinical departments that anticipate growth. Determine a strategy for future accommodation of displaced soft space.
  • Provide shell space equal to at least 5% of DGA. Locate it such that it can be occupied without displacing occupied space.
  • Identify horizontal expansion capacity for diagnostic and treatment or other clinical space equal to at least 30% of existing floor area (excluding inpatient units) without demolition of occupied space (other than at the connection point). Reconfiguration of additional existing occupied space that has been constructed with demountable partition systems is permitted. Design for future vertical expansion on at least 75% of the roof, ensuring that existing operations and service systems can continue at or near capacity during the expansion.
  • Designate space for future above-grade parking structures equal to 50% of existing on-grade parking capacity, with direct access to the main hospital lobby or circulation. Vertical transportation pathways that lead directly to the main hospital lobby or circulation are acceptable.
  • Use demountable partitions for 50% of applicable areas.
  • Use movable or modular casework for at least 50% of casework and custom millwork. Base the calculation on the combined value of casework and millwork, as determined by the cost estimator or contractor.
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