By Jessie Fetterling, HC&O News –
The new five-story, 93,000-square-foot Miami Valley Hospital South (MVHS) Comprehensive Cancer Center opened in Dayton on Jan. 24. Despite a documented 20 to 24 rain days that delayed building, a collaborative effort made it so that construction on the project was completed in mid-December — about 45 days ahead of schedule and just in time for the MVH Foundation’s New Year’s Eve gala.
Dayton-based Danis Building Construction and Wise Construction Company partnered as the construction manager; Andrews Architects Inc., located in Columbus, designed the building; and HealthPlex, also out of Columbus, managed the project.
Because construction started in October 2011, the team was concerned about bringing the project out of ground during the winter and decided to start with work on the basement first to avoid building above ground. They also worked selective Saturdays to make up the lost time due to weather and to get ahead of schedule.
“I think the aggressive schedule was something we were very pleased to meet the owners’ request on, as well as the preplanning work we did to meet the budget,” said Troy Erbes, vice president of business development for Danis. “It’s a testament to our team’s ability to provide value and come up with creative ways to save.”
At the same time the Danis-Wise team was working, another construction team was working on an addition to the hospital a mere 50 feet away. This required proper organization and collaboration so that construction noise and safety issues did not disrupt the hospital’s daily operations.
At one point, the Danis-Wise team had to perform lime stabilization of the soil, which can result in lime distribution in the air. As a result, the two construction teams decided for Danis-Wise to work at night when staff and patients would not be on site, which was another factor that sped up the scheduling process.
The high-tech equipment needed for the facility took a lot of strategy and collaboration for it to work with the design. Luckily, Danis has worked on similar projects before, so they have a system set up for how to prepare for the equipment, and for this project, they just “put it into overdrive,” said Annmarie Thurnquist, the project’s preconstruction manager for the company. For instance, the installation of the TruBeam Linear Accelerator, which provides advanced radiation technology, took a lot of collaboration between multiple parties, even in the preconstruction phase.
“The preconstruction staff starts identifying equipment early on — what the issues and concerns are — and then we do a crosscheck provided by the design team to make sure that we include all the special requirements and needs for us to write the scope of the project for the bid packages,” Thurnquist said. “Another key thing is that you can’t just look at it in the precon. You have to follow through and work with the purchasing agent to make sure that what is purchased works with the design. Sometimes there are model upgrades that go against what we planned for.”
In terms of interior design, the patient experience played a significant role at the cancer center. “This is a beautiful building, so there was concern about having a high level of quality, not just with the equipment and health care, but the finishes. The cancer center is also very patient centric,” said Thurnquist. “We did mock ups of some fusion areas to make sure they met the needs of those cancer patients who are coming in and sitting for hours on end. We did mock ups to make sure the infusion areas were comfortable, efficient and located in areas that overlooked a healing garden or something of that nature.”
After working at the center for a couple of weeks now, the center’s staff has given the construction team a lot of positive feedback, according to Dave Haverkos, project director for Danis.
The facility houses office space for 35 physicians that provide medical and radiation oncology services. It is the first of its kind in the Dayton area and will make it so that patients can receive a variety of treatments all in one location.