Monash University Alfred Centre PC2 Laboratory

Monash University developed a new Physical Containment (PC2) laboratory at the Alfred Hospital to support their Central Clinical School and realise a significant research opportunity. The new laboratory provides a flexible, modern teaching space, along with supporting facilities including fume cupboards, freezer space, and a new reverse osmosis purified water system.

Physical Containment laboratories rely upon sophisticated air flow management systems to maintain pressure hierarchies, the complex nature of commissioning such a facility demands the expert input from an experienced commissioning specialist.

Involved from the beginning of the PC2 laboratory project’s construction phase, A.G. Coombs Advisory, as Independent Commissioning Agent, undertook a detailed design review for commissionability, addressing the building systems and the construction processes and details required to achieve air-tightness. A comprehensive commissioning plan was formulated with the clear objective of meeting the University’s exacting specification for the facility and the stringent government certification requirements.

Builder Icon Co undertook the fit out, with A.G. Coombs Projects delivering the HVAC and mechanical services for this complex project. An accelerated installation program saw the successful delivery of the fit out in just 12 weeks.

The complex nature of commissioning such a facility demanded the expert input the A.G. Coombs Commissioning team throughout the delivery period.

The overriding objective was to deliver a PC2 qualified laboratory in the time it would normally take to build a standard commercial office. This involved working collaboratively with all stakeholders and utilising innovative methods to design and deliver the key components for the fitout. For example, using point cloud 3D scanning technology to map the base building, A.G. Coombs were able to produce a BIM model quickly which enabled services clash detection and supported a highly efficient installation process.

The installation included complex riser systems for new Fume Cupboards, state of the art Cool Rooms with dehumidification systems, and the creation of smart pressure differentiation control strategies. To ensure a successful and accelerated commissioning process intelligent air pressure testing was employed at intervals throughout the project.

A.G. Coombs Advisory’s leading commissioning approach is well supported by their experienced Independent Commissioning Agent experts ... We knew when the University received Advisory’s final commissioning report that the works were not just complete, but also correct.

Emily Mudge, Senior Project Manager, Icon Co

Project Overview

Project Name: Monash University Alfred Centre PC2 Laboratory

Location: Victoria

Client: ICON Co.

Project Value: $4m

Year Completed: 2017

Project Type

Design, Installation and Commissioning - HVAC and Mechanical Services


  • PC2 qualified teaching laboratory fit out successfully completed with no interruption to the scheduled occupancy.
  • High level management expertise applied to coordinate accelerated installation, achieved safely and without incident.
  • Independent Commissioning Agent (ICA) services ensured Critical Environment requirements are met and certified.
  • Zero installation clashes through successful use of BIM design technology.

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