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DI (FH) Ondrej Galas20.12.20233 min read

Project: University Hospital Aachen

Planning of Surgical Intensive Care – when old meets new.

The construction of a hospital is always a challenging task for planners. Many different trades must meet high hygiene and safety standards. If you extend an old building by a new construction, it results in a particular planning challenge. Ondrej Galas, project lead engineer for this extensive project, describes how BIMEXPERTS was able to score points in the preparation of the construction of the Intensive Care Department at Aachen University Hospital despite various obstacles.


Even before BIMEXPERTS was commissioned, the UKA Aachen was already in planning up to service phase 3, which was then handed over to a total contractor in 2020. At this time, a consortium included various executing (construction) companies, as well as plumbers, electrical engineers, etc.

These were not able to cover the extensive planning up to service phase 5, especially for the complex MEP planning, which is why BIMEXPERTS was called in with the project partner Caverion. At the same time, we noticed that the preliminary planning was not complete. The upgrade on our part was the starting signal for the further implementation planning for the new building, which lasted until November 2023.

Aachen and the local University Hospital (UKA) are situated in earthquake zone 3, according to DIN 4149. The hospital will also house an emergency surgery unit and a department for severely burnt patients and children. The necessary systems must function perfectly regardless of any environmental influences, including earthquakes, fire hazards, etc. - especially when an operation is taking place.


BIM planning overcomes obstacles

With a gross floor area of 7,500m2 and an order volume of around EUR 23 million, which was accounted for in KG400, BIMEXPERTS dealt with the HVAC planning under the given framework conditions.

The BIM method using Revit, Dendrit and Solar Computer created the desired added value with a centralised data model; the preliminary planning was not mapped with BIM. In addition to the sought-after BIM expertise, the BIMEXPERTS were able to contribute their specialist knowledge of all mechanical HVAC trades, including fire extinguishing technology. They accomplished this in around 16,000 working hours, almost exclusively remotely, as the start of the project coincided with the coronavirus period.


Ventilation application as a milestone, old & new

In Germany, planning for ventilation and wastewater must be authorised by the relevant building authority. To date, the ventilation application had always been rejected and no authorisation had been granted. Thanks to the detailed BIM planning by BIMEXPERTS, this necessary step could be implemented in a new attempt.

The new intensive care building was to fit seamlessly into the hospital grounds, which is an earlier construction from the beginning of the 1960s. The existing premises, which were state of the art at the time, were designed to be lower, but these heights were still to be adopted in a "buildable" way.

Special patients require special technology, so in addition to hygienic ventilation systems, special bathtubs had to be planned for burn victims. When room volume and capacity are limited, only industry-specific knowledge and experience helps to plan the necessary technical building equipment (TGA) to be realised in accordance with the order.

Ondrej Galas summarises:

"A combination of many years of experience in hospital planning and appropriate resources, enabled us to successfully implement the assigned tasks for the new UKA building."


After 30 months of successful planning, this project is now entering the realisation phase.

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Ondrej GALAS is mechanical engineer and has worked for BIMEXPERT as a project manager on numerous TGA projects. He also manages the location in Serbia.



  • We extend our appreciation to Caverion, our project partner, for their collaboration and support in making this project successful.
  • Special acknowledgment to Architekten Naujack Rind Hof for their meticulous architectural design.


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DI (FH) Ondrej Galas

Ondrej Galas serves as the Branch Manager for the Serbian location at BIMEXPERTS