The NIH construction program supports the scientific and programmatic priorities of the NIH Research Program. The construction program balances the infrastructure needs of tomorrow’s biomedical research and the need for responsible stewardship of yesterday’s investments in research facilities. The program is based on a Five-Year Buildings and Space Plan developed after extensive consultation with scientists, science administrators, and NIH leadership.
Facilities exert a profound influence on the future productivity of NIH research, so they require extensive advance planning and are generally part of the NIH Master Plans. Duration of the work from conception to beneficial occupancy usually takes many years and includes community involvement.
Design and Construction
Project management is the responsibility of the Office of Research Facilities (ORF) Project Officer (PO). NIH facilities are designed and constructed by one or more professional architecture, engineering and construction firms. They work under the direction of the PO as part of a project team composed of staff of stakeholders such as safety and health, environmental protection, maintenance, facility management, security, fire prevention, and the IC customers.
Before moving into a facility, the ORF construction management staff inspects the space, conducts training for maintenance and facility management staff on the operation and maintenance of installed equipment. ORF manages general maintenance and other services for the building. The NIH takes beneficial occupancy of the space once NIH Fire Prevention staff issues approval.
Maintenance and Repair
Once the new space is occupied, facility management and operations and maintenance of the facility become the responsibility of ORF's Division of Facilities Operations and Maintenance (DFOM).