Stoughton Hospital has begun a 35,693sf construction project to renovate and add on to the existing Emergency Department (ED) to increase patient privacy in all patient rooms and in the registration area. The addition will fill a two-story void underneath an overhang with new ED space and will also include a new ambulance bay to the west of the existing structure. The renovation will allow for expansion of the Day Surgery Department from thirteen to seventeen beds and provide designated space for a growing Infusion Therapy Services product line.
The primary challenge is performing construction in, under, and adjacent to the existing hospital. The project is surrounded by multiple bustling departments, ER, OR, and Prep & Recovery, running 24 hours a day.
A second challenge is keeping the entire hospital functional throughout construction. This means that all existing services have to remain online while tying in the mechanical and electrical systems for the new addition. Patient lives literally depend on it.
The last major challenge was existing conditions. Renovation projects inevitably have unforeseen conditions discovered during construction, and this project was no exception.
To keep the hospital fully operational, this project is being completed in three main phases. Each phase takes into account the space and room counts, guaranteeing all departments would remain running. With the existing hospital in such close proximity to the construction, the phasing also incorporates the hospital’s schedule when it comes to activities that create noise and vibrations.
The two most critical parts of the phasing are for the relocation of all existing corridors and the new construction, which is replacing their existing ambulance garage and ER entry. For the corridors, all egress paths have to be maintained, as well as department access with maximum clearances. For the new construction, planned routes had to be identified for all existing services and ER traffic, including working with Stoughton Hospital to accommodate Med Flight traffic.
In addition, the construction team also has daily check-in meetings with the facilities manager to address any concerns. These meetings provide the forum to discuss interim changes and incorporate their feedback into the planning of the work.
The phasing of the new and existing services have to remain functional to the occupied portions of the building, so two fully functional mechanical and electrical systems were made.
Critical phasing for this portion of the project included:
- Existing corridors will not remain in the same location in the new construction, so locations of utilities and services, as well as access to completed and future phases, were incorporated into the plan. The phasing plans are shared with all at Stoughton Hospital to make sure everyone understood which spaces would be available at any given time.
- Existing services for future phases ran through current phases being completed, so the construction team had to build around these locations with plans for demolition at a future time.
- The scheduling of shutdowns and coordination of all tie-ins is a critical portion of the project, so they are scheduling on off-hours and weekends when they would have the least impact on Stoughton Hospital. The advanced planning done in this area allows all departments to plan ahead for any shutdowns that would affect their space.
The existing spaces for Stoughton Hospital were not well documented on as-built drawings or accessible prior to construction. The following was done to work around this issue:
- Spaces were surveyed prior to the construction taking place and existing utilities were coordinated with all mechanical and electrical trades.
- The construction team documented the existing building conditions as it related to structure and ceiling heights prior to making determinations for new construction.
- The construction team works rapidly to incorporate items that could not move, and planned around existing utilities and services.
- Work closely with Stoughton Hospital and Kahler Slater to mitigate the cost of costly relocations and incorporate the unforeseen conditions into a workable design for the project.
Stoughton Hospital is continuously maintaining their minimum room counts for patient services and their patient traffic flow at all times during construction. In addition, construction is able to be rescheduled or stopped at a moment’s notice to accommodate special circumstances at the hospital. Stoughton Hospital knows exactly how construction is impacting their operations at any given moment and are able to provide feedback during the planning of the work, rather than when it is already underway. This process makes the work more efficient and builds trust with the hospital staff.
Stoughton Hospital has had no unscheduled interruption of service to the hospital.
Stoughton Hospital has the information they needed to make sound business decisions when issues are encountered and the completion date for the construction schedule remains unchanged.