Northeast Georgia Medical Center Braselton
River Place Campus

project photo
  • Location:
    Braselton, Georgia
  • Size:
    100 Bed green-field hospital, 225 ksf hospital and 108 ksf integrated medical office
  • Construction Cost:
  • Status:
    Estimated Project Completion: Spring 2015

    PerryCrabb Key Personnel:

  • Principal: Jim Crabb, PE
  • Project Manager: Mike Lamb, PE
  • Associate: Peter Andersen, PE

Owner Reference:

Northeast Georgia Health Systems
Rudy Lonergan, Director of Facilities Development


As one of the “50 Best Hospitals” according to HealthGrades, NGHS knew what they wanted – a project team that would create a total patient experience that is among the best in the world. The team would use innovative ideas, evidence-based principles and lean, value-oriented processes to create a sustainable healthcare destination. They selected PerryCrabb as part of their integrated project delivery team and challenged us to re-think everything, including the design process itself.


PerryCrabb developed a ground-source heat pump system that uses the earth as a thermal battery and municipal grey water for additional heat rejection. Holes are bored 500 feet into the granite bedrock to store excess heat, which is then reclaimed when it is needed. This is a central-plant system that recycles internal energy to heat the building and make domestic hot water. No fossil fuels are burned on site – except for cooking and emergency power.

Using the Lean A3 documentation method, the team demonstrated both lower capital and life cycle costs that are half that of a legacy central plant – $8M savings over 30 years.

All major decisions on the project were guided by the core values established by NGHS. The team used lean tools – developing base design and component budgets and teams, including MEP subcontractors – then evaluated and tracked options with set logs, continually seeking opportunities for value improvement.


Construction began before design was complete, because the project remained in budget throughout the process. The final design came in under budget – without the typical bloodletting of “value engineering.” MEP construction cost came to $10/sf less than average for the Atlanta market, without compromise on patient experience or overall quality, and with unusually low projected operating costs.