Officials check up on new Oakville hospital
New hospital a source of pride for local residents
Oakville MPP Kevin Flynn and The Oakville Beaver had an opportunity to take a sneak peek on construction progress during a site tour of the new Oakville hospital last week.
About 17 months after the official groundbreaking, the skeleton of the facility is well underway.
Six large cranes continue to tower over the eight-storey building, which at the moment, is devoid of exterior walls.
The site is a beehive of activity as more than 500 construction workers install piping, deliver supplies and examine blueprints to make sure that when the hospital opens in December 2015 everything runs like clockwork.
Halton Healthcare Services (HHS) President and CEO John Oliver said the project is currently on budget and about six weeks ahead of schedule.
That said, there is still much to be done.
“I think they’re done about 25 per cent of the construction schedule,” said Oliver.
“The massive structure is now here. The real time is finishing it out, doing all the interiors, bringing that up to the standard we want and finishing up the rooms.”
Oliver said by late summer or early fall, the facility will stop looking like a construction project as walls will be built and the building’s exterior will begin to take shape.
Construction is expected to begin on the facility’s parking garage in March.
Oliver said much of the behind-the-scenes work is still going on to ensure the hospital is a success.
Design work on patient rooms is ongoing with health-care workers being consulted to determine small details such as placement of outlets.
Determining where equipment will go as well as what will be moved from the existing Oakville-Trafalgar Memorial Hospital (OTMH) and what will be purchased new is another task. Oliver said there will be 39,000 pieces of equipment in the new hospital.
Ensuring HHS staff members are ready when the hospital opens is yet another job.
“We need to make sure everyone knows their job. We’ll have close to 2,400-2,500 people who need to know exactly what they are doing on that day,” said Oliver.
“We want to make it so the first patient in, doesn’t feel like the first patient in... that they feel like this is a long-running, well-practiced healthcare setting. There can be no confusion and no uncertainty on opening day. We have almost two and a half years to get ready — we’re starting now with very detailed plans.”
During the tour, Oliver pointed to what will eventually be the facility’s massive courtyard.
While currently just an open structure surrounded by a concrete frame, Oliver pointed out when the hospital is complete it will provide natural light and a view for many patients who previously would not have had one.
On the seventh floor, Oliver noted that the amazing view of Halton — enjoyed by Flynn and the media — would be that enjoyed by future patients.
“There will be a drop down window so they can look out and see that view, see down to the ground and feel connected to where they are. Not just a high window and a sky view,” said Oliver.
“Part of what we are trying to create is a connection to nature and an environment where people have lots of daylight, lots of natural light. That is a big part of the healing process. We’re working on creating not only a good hospital environment, but a good healing environment.”
Flynn said the new hospital at Third Line and Dundas Street is one of which all residents should be proud.
“When someone tells you it is going to take an investment from the Province of more than $2 billion, it’s kind of staggering until you walk through the building and you see what is actually involved in building a hospital... the number of people involved, the materials,” said Flynn.
“I think people in Oakville should be extremely proud of the work that has been done by the local level of government and by the provincial level of government to get the site to this point.”
The new Oakville hospital will replace the existing OTMH located at 327 Reynolds St.
Article courtesy of www.InsideHalton.com
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