Hospital Work Moving Forward

April 28, 2008
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Rockford Construction has recently begun managing the second half of the third phase of the $18 million expansion of Carson City Hospital.

The third phase had to be broken up into halves due to the volume of work and also to allow the hospital to function properly in the midst of the construction.

The current work includes finishing the radiology department and adding a third X-ray room. Building the nuclear medicine laboratory and the ultrasound rooms are also part of this stage, as is a fairly extensive demolition of an interior portion of the hospital.

After the demolition work is done, Rockford will direct a reconstruction of the interior while the hospital continues to operate in its four wings.

The first half of the third phase started last June and took nine months to complete. Hospital officials held an open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony in late February to showcase the work.

Another 14,000 square feet was renovated and added to the hospital in the third phase’s first half. That work included installing a new main entrance and building a new lobby with a cascading water fountain, an information kiosk, a new fireplace, wireless Internet access and a new coffee shop. A new outpatient therapy center, endoscopy suite and patient registration department were also part of the work.

“Completing phase 3A really set the stage for the proceeding work to be done in 3B. The initial stage went very well and the hospital is functioning more efficiently with the added features,” said Curt Lautenbach, Rockford Construction project manager.

“Through continued open, honest communication and coordinated construction processes, we anticipate a successful completion of phase 3 and a better operating hospital for the Carson City area,” he added.

Lautenbach said the second portion of phase 3 should be finished this fall. The extensive expansion of the hospital at 406 E. Elm St. is expected to be completed next spring.

Phase 1 began in August 2005 and was finished in early 2006. That work added a new office building to the hospital campus and a new rehabilitation center that features the only full-time magnetic resonance imaging machine in Clinton, Ionia and Montcalm counties.

Phase 2 got under way in April 2006 and ended 13 months later. That work produced a new emergency department that is twice the size of the previous one and a new entrance to the ER.

BETA Design of Grand Rapids has done the architectural, engineering and interior-design work for all the phases of the expansion project.

Hospital officials raised $1.9 million from a public campaign for the project, roughly $400,000 over its goal. Carson City Hospital is affiliated with the Sparrow Health System, and the Lansing-based provider has agreed to contribute $250,000 over five years to help pay for the work. The Michigan State Hospital Finance Authority loaned CCH about $16 million for the project, about 90 percent of the work’s total $18 million price tag.

“We’ve got a strong, experienced team working in a tightly regulated environment,” said Lautenbach. “Safety, privacy and timeline issues are all playing major roles in the progress.” CQX

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