Ohhh...this can be fun, but also stressful. Hopefully you get a decent budget for this. I've been lucky to build a lab with a sizable budget, but also had to piece meal one together off shoe string budget. As Charles said, the design of the lab is based on your process, products, and testing you will be doing.
From my experience, mostly dairy and beverage, here's my input:
- Go with LED lighting. Cheaper operation and long life. You can get switches with motion sensors so they will automatically turn on / off when you leave, or no motion is detected, or you arrive.
- Counter tops. Depends on what testing you will be doing, along with the reagents and chemicals you will be using. If you can...go with stainless, but that's quite expensive. There is ESD Laminate (carbon black surface) which resists a lot of chemicals, but the downside is it scratches quite easily. Moderate on the price. Quartz is another option, moderate to cheaper price resists chemicals, resists staining, doesn't really scratch or chip.
- Consider your power supply options. At my previous lab they designed the power outlets above the countertop. It is nice for accessibility, but honestly not a great look, plus cords took up a lot of space on the countertop. Depending on the cabinets you go with you can get the power supply below the countertop behind cabinets with open back cabinets.
- What micro testing will you be doing? How often? How much testing? In my opinion, unless the micro testing is very critical to your process or you do a lot of it a separate micro room is a waste of space. You can use existing lab area to do micro testing with a HEPA supply hood overhead if you want to isolate to some degree.
- Whatever size you are thinking of for your retains double it. Honestly, every lab I've been in never has enough room for retain samples. I would also utilize racks with wheels instead of built in shelving. This allows you more flexibility and if you run into a temperature control issue you can wheel the racks to a cooler, or other area. This came in very handy in my last lab.
- Put a lot of thought into your lab security and restricting personnel access. Who really needs the access? How will samples flow through and to and from the lab? Traffic pattern? Lock the lab down if you can...I know it can be difficult.
- Think about the testing flow and try to design the lab around it. Placement of your instruments, area and room for specific testing, personnel traffic within the lab.
There are laboratory design companies like Genie Scientific, web link below, who can design, build, and install your cabinetry and surface, as well as, any fume hoods if needed. Definitely worth checking out.