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Silver Cross Replacement Hospital Wins CBC Award

GRAEF recently learned that the Silver Cross Replacement Hospital was named a finalist in the 2013 Chicago Building Congress (CBC) Merit Awards. The hospital was entered in the “New Consturction Suburbs” category. Working with architect, RTKL, and construction manager, Mortenson Construction, the project team was able to overcome challenges of design, coordination, and the world financial crisis.

Having outgrown its existing campus in Joliet, Silver Cross Hospital needed an updated facility to continue its mission of providing quality healthcare for an expanding community. The new hospital provides enhanced quality, safety, and service in an environment designed for future technology. GRAEF provided structural engineering for the new six-story, 600,000SF replacement structure with 289 private room, 39 emergency treatments rooms, and eleven surgical suites. From the project’s onset, the AEC (architect/engineer/construction) team was focused on designing within a collaborative framework. Revit/BIM was selected as the centralized 3D environment. Using this common platform allowed for effective integrated project delivery (IPD) without contractual obligations associated with a full IPD project.

The hospital’s design allows for long-term growth that doesn’t sacrifice operational efficiencies or aesthetics. The six-story tower is designed to support the addition of two floors without disruption to ongoing operations. Another adjacent bed tower can also be added in such a way that those patient rooms and the rooms in the current tower will be equidistant to surgery and major diagnostic departments. Additionally, all patient rooms can be converted into ICU-capable rooms without moving the patient, and the hospital is able to adapt full electronic charting more easily because of the technology infrastructure included in this phase.

Although the team was challenged throughout the project, they encountered their greatest challenge, the world economic decline, in late 2008 and early 2009. The entire team pulled together and developed a comprehensive plan that not only met the owners revised budget, but absorbed the delays and completed the project under-budget and within the originally planned schedule. The residents of Joliet and surrounding communities now have state-of-the-art healthcare in their neighborhood and the assurance that their medical community is prepared for growth well into the future.

The CBC will announce winners in each competition category at their annual dinner in May.


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