architect Anshen Dyer has beaten bids from seven other practices to win a £300m extension of the Royal Victoria Hospital complex in Belfast.
The healthcare specialist will design a replacement for the Royal Maternity Hospital and will enlarge the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children. Anshen Dyer declined to comment but it is understood that the selection was made last week, although the final touches are being made to the brief before an announcement.
Other bidders are known to include HOK, and a team made up of Michael Hopkins, Todd Architects and Hall Black Douglas.
The units are part of a redevelopment of the Royal Victoria Hospital's 32 ha site. Phase one, a 29,000 m2 central hospital, is complete. A £22m imaging centre is also part of the scheme.
The unit will include ward accommodation, theatre and out-patient space as well as housing services such as physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, and social work and psychology.
Anshen Dyer declined to comment but it is understood the selection was made last week, although the final touches are being made
The units will be built under a fresh PFI model being tested in Northern Ireland. Under this system architects are expected to design exemplar schemes before PFI consortiums bid for construction contracts.
The process, the brainchild of Health Estates chief executive John Cole, is intended to improve design quality in PFI hospitals and has been championed by the RIBA as an alternative to the current PFI system.
However, the Strategic Investment Board, an investment adviser, has warned that exemplar schemes would be unlikely to work for PFI. The board's views prompted fears among architects that their designs could be watered down.