Construction resumed this week on the new four-story, 136-bed patient care wing at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center, a week after employees flipped pancakes, sold brownies and engineered a raffle to help raise money for the $181 million project.
Over the course of the week, about 100 construction workers are returning to the construction site at the Mission Hills hospital to complete work on a project temporarily halted by a lawsuit, but on track again after favorable rulings in March by the Los Angeles City Council and subsequently a Superior Court judge.
“We couldn’t wait to get started again,” said Larry Bowe, the medical center’s new chief executive. “Providence Holy Cross is nearly always at capacity. We’ve had tremendous support from our employees, our physicians, the City Council and our community to get the ball rolling again.”
Providence hired San Francisco-based Swinerton Builders to complete the 120,000-square foot building that will house a new Women’s Pavilion, a neonatal intensive-care unit, observation rooms for emergency patients, a new gastro-intestinal lab, more surgical and critical care beds and a 100-seat chapel.
In mid-May the Providence Holy Cross Foundation kicked off its Care Can’t Wait employee campaign to support the project, and within days more than $360,000 had been pledged toward the $500,000 goal.
“We were stunned,” said Brian Thorne, the foundation’s executive director. “We had just announced the campaign and a few days later we were nearly three-fourths of the way to our goal. The employees here are really dedicated to this expansion because it means better care for their patients.”
Employee teams have been competing with one another in recent days to raise money. A raffle netted more than $3,700 and another is planned next week. Other fund-raisers included an old-fashioned bake sale, a pancake breakfast, a contest for a prime parking place, a car wash and a gourmet dessert sale.
The new patient care wing is due to open in late 2010. The building is LEED-certified, meaning it will meet the nation’s most stringent environmentally-friendly standards. In fact, this expansion will be the first “green” hospital building in California , limiting its environmental impacts in perpetuity.
It also is being built to the highest seismic safety standards, designed not only to withstand a major earthquake, but to remain operational.
The Providence Holy Cross expansion is being funded entirely by Providence and the communities it serves.