I am frequently amazed at how difficult it is to convince the prospective owners of a new laboratory building, not necessarily the scientists who will use the building, that they know more about what their needs are than anyone else. Owners often do not realize that they can determine their needs by examining an existing facility-even if it is someone s. Once owners have projected their future needs in programs and people, it is easy to project the need for space.

Determining Space Needs

Although area (expressed in square feet in the United States and in square meters in most other parts of the world) is the accepted form of space projection, it is not necessarily the best means of determining real needs.

Some 25 years ago, I began looking at another factor that I think is the real driver in determining space needs-the ELF, or equivalent lineal feet of...

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