Replacement Hospital Project Turning Dirt in December

Nov 27, 2019 /


Uvalde Memorial Hospital made a monumental step in proceeding with the hospital replacement project upon holding a formal pre-construction conference with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) on November 20 and closing interim financing arrangements with First State Bank of Uvalde (FSB) on November 26. With the completion of those two tasks, UMH has issued the Notice to Proceed to project contractor Hoar Construction, and work will begin on-site on December 2, 2019.

Long term financing was secured with the USDA earlier this year, and with short-term financing now secured through FSB, the hospital board and administrators, alongside owner’s representatives Steve Larson and Chris Larson from Next, Inc., architectural firm Perkins+Will, and contractor Hoar Construction, will begin the 18-24 month process of building the hospital’s new 160,000 square foot facility.

“These are exciting times for the future of healthcare in Uvalde and the surrounding area. First State Bank is very proud to be a part of the new hospital and making the construction come to fruition,” stated Chad D. Stary, President and CEO of First State Bank of Uvalde. “There has been a legacy relationship between the Bank and Hospital and we look forward to the vision and growth this new facility will provide to help grow our area and provide healthcare services to all the residents.”

The new 2-story facility, which will lie southeast of the current building, is anticipated to be complete in the second half of 2021 for a guaranteed maximum price (GMP) of just over $91 million. The new building will expand the hospital’s current footprint with a configuration that includes larger patient rooms and a layout that will meet regulatory standards.

On the first floor, outpatient services will be easily accessible and an expanded emergency room with additional treatment rooms will neighbor space housing urgent care services. On the second floor, 25 inpatient beds and 19 outpatient beds will increase patient privacy and evolve the delivery of care to better accommodate patients, visitors, and staff with new efficiencies and improved amenities not currently available. Care between inpatient and outpatient beds will remain seamless from a patient’s perspective.

“Like hospitals around the nation, the bulk of services provided 10-15 years ago were inpatient, and hospitals were built accordingly. Today, most services are outpatient, and patients go home the same day of service. Our new facility will focus on this industry-wide shift with an efficient, patient-centered layout housing outpatient services in a centralized manner,” CEO Tom Nordwick shared.

The more efficient layout will house some departments in larger areas, or smaller areas, based on each service’s needs, but hospital board and administration do not anticipate any reduction in services.

The new facility will also provide opportunities to implement new technology and equipment such as fully integrated operating rooms, controlled access for patient and visitor safety, the latest environmental systems further reducing risk of infection, advanced patient call and response systems, and cutting edge diagnostic tools.

Many possibilities for the hospital’s existing facilities were explored and no viable alternative uses were identified.

“While we explored many options and wish to be good stewards of the current building, we did not find a financially feasible use for the aging plant,” Nordwick stated.

In phase two of the replacement project, the current building will be erased and transformed to better accommodate patients and visitors with additional parking and outdoors space, and areas potentially available for community use as well.

Extensive preparation for the replacement project has spanned over the last 2 years, but seeds for a project of this magnitude were planted years before as previous administrator Jim Buckner and the hospital board realized a need to plan for the future of healthcare in Uvalde and the surrounding areas. At that time, a project was not financially realistic but the team’s foresight laid the groundwork that, years later, has made the project a reality.

In December of 2017, administrator Tom Nordwick, on behalf of the board, medical staff, and administration, announced the hospital’s intent to proceed with a replacement project. Space needs assessments, preliminary design, development of detailed renderings, and schematic design took place throughout 2018. The year 2019 consisted of the selection of a construction firm, coordination for financing, and a ground breaking in August.

For additional information on the building project or hospital tours, please contact Karla Radicke, at 830.278.6251 ext. 1037.

PICTURE: (L-R) Chad Stary, President and CEO of First State Bank of Uvalde, and Tom Nordwick, CEO of Uvalde Memorial Hospital, sit with Kyla Dodson, escrow assistant at Garner Abstract & Land Company, to finalize documents securing short-term financing of the hospital’s building replacement project. Upon signing financing documents Uvalde Memorial Hospital issued notice to proceed on November 26 to contractor Hoar Construction and site-work will begin December 2.