Isis SCIF Study

The plan for this project space would replace an existing SCIF(Secure Compartmentalized Information Facility). The new SCIF would accommodate the need for private office work and conference space within an existing research and development facility at Isis' Carlsbad Research Campus. The new space would meet DCI 6/9 design criteria to permit secure communications.  When complete, the new space would function independently of the surrounding areas of the building, while providing for continuity of the existing building exit scheme.
Design Approach:
Interviews were conducted with scientific staff and management to determine the functions that would be housed in the new facility.  These functions were compared to the available electrical and mechanical systems capacities in the area of the work to determine if new or changed support equipment would be required.  A detail survey and field measurements of the existing space was conducted to verify existing as built drawings of the space. Alternative schemes were developed and reviewed in detail with the users of the space to determine the best configuration for each of the individual rooms proposed. Ultimately, I plan for the overall development of the space was approved by all the parties involved in the design and improvements in the building that would be required to support the construction were identified.
Design Objective:
The new SCIF would provide for a secure space in which contracted business could be conducted.  A primary objective of the design was to make the integration of the new facility into the existing plan as seamless as possible.  The new SCIF would replace an existing copy room and administrative offices, which would require relocation into adjacent available undeveloped space.  All the work was to take place inside an existing facility while it 

Design Challenge:
The existing building roof load could not support additional equipment or ceiling loads in the area of the work.  All the new equipment required for operation of the SCIF as well as the new ceiling systems, which would require support would have to be supported by load bearing walls on to the existing building floor or new foundation systems installed in the floor.  The existing building exiting scheme require that this interior space function as part of the rated corridor scheme for the building.  This corridor scheme had to remain operational during a period of construction, and was required to remain available for use inside the secure space of the SCIF.  These objectives were met through the use of a new material scheme that allowed for the suspension.  A relatively lightweight new ceiling material with very high sound absorption characteristics was utilized within the larger areas of the space. While the construction of load bearing tunnel wall systems was used in those areas where development already existed above the proposed location of the SCIF, or the location of other mechanical systems, already in place, made the floor support of new systems necessary.