Growing Banner-University Medical Center Expands Tucson Campus

Although the building will top out at nine stories initially, the project is designed to add two additional floors in the future.

📅   Fri November 11, 2016 - West Edition #23
Chuck Harvey - CEG CORRESPONDENT


Shepley Bulfinch photo.
Banner-University Medical Center is building a new, $400 million, nine-story tower that will replace the 40-year-old hospital now in use at the center’s Tucson campus.
Shepley Bulfinch photo. Banner-University Medical Center is building a new, $400 million, nine-story tower that will replace the 40-year-old hospital now in use at the center’s Tucson campus.
Shepley Bulfinch photo.
Banner-University Medical Center is building a new, $400 million, nine-story tower that will replace the 40-year-old hospital now in use at the center’s Tucson campus. Sundt Construction Inc. photo
The facility will include significant shell space to provide future clinical growth at the campus. Sundt Construction Inc. photo.
A crane was in place during initial construction during summer and a second larger crane is now used to handle a portion of the steel erection.
Sundt Construction Inc. photo
The team has placed Pokemon characters on the structure facing the children’s wing of the hospital. Sundt Construction Inc. photo
The team moves Pokemon characters around once or twice a week to make a game for the kids who are receiving treatment.

Banner-University Medical Center is building a new, $400 million, nine-story tower that will replace the 40-year-old hospital now in use at the center's Tucson campus at 1501 N. Campbell Ave. Construction started early this year and the new hospital is scheduled to open in 2019.

Although the building will top out at nine stories initially, the project is designed to add two additional floors in the future. The city of Tucson has approved Banner Health's Planned Area Development for the campus that allows for an 11-story building.

Contractor for the project is Sundt I DPR, a joint venture, comprised of partners, Sundt Construction Inc. of Tucson, and DPR Construction of Phoenix. Architects for the new hospital tower are Shepley Bullfinch of Phoenix, and GLHN Architects and Engineers Inc. of Tucson. Subcontractors include Schuff Steel of San Diego, Calif.; Sturgeon Electric of Chino, Calif.; Kazal Fire Protection of Tucson, Ariz.; University Mechanical of Anaheim, Calif. and KT Fabrication of Chandler, Ariz.

The contractor expects to have more than 400 workers on site at the peak of construction.

Banner is spending an additional $100 million to build a new outpatient clinic next door to the Peter and Paula Fasseas Cancer Clinic on the Banner-University Medical Center North Campus at 3838 N. Campbell Ave. It will be a three-story, 208,000-sq.-ft. (19,324 sq m) building that contains physicians' offices, medical imaging and oncology services as well as clinics for cardiology, pulmonary, neurosurgery, rheumatology, geriatrics, otolaryngology, general surgery and allergy services.

The facility also will include significant shell space to provide future clinical growth at the campus. Besides the outpatient building, the project includes a three-story parking garage. It will be Banner Health's largest outpatient health center.

Contractor for the outpatient clinic is Hensel Phelps Construction of Irvine, Calif.

The outpatient clinic is expected to open in 2018.

Contractor Collaboration

Despite having different contractors, plans and ideas for the hospital tower and outpatient health center projects are being shared.

“There is significant planning coordination and construction collaboration between the two projects at many levels including the development of an exterior mockup for the hospital project on the construction staging site for the [outpatient] health center project,” said Stefanie Teller, an employee-owner at Sundt Construction Inc.

The 670,000-sq.-ft. (62,245 sq m) patient tower will be configured and sized for current and future health-care technology with 336 private patient rooms, 22 new operating rooms, imaging suites and public spaces.

The tower will open with 240 private rooms and 460 licensed inpatient beds. Shelled space on the top floor will accommodate 24 additional inpatient beds in the future. The existing hospital has 479 licensed inpatient beds.

The vast majority of licensed inpatient beds will be in single-occupancy rooms.

Once the new tower opens, beds in the original hospital building will no longer be used.

Modern Facilities Improve Comfort, Efficiency

“The new patient rooms will be an enormous upgrade from the current 1970s-era rooms,” Teller said. “In addition to providing larger single-occupancy patient rooms, many other ancillary services such as surgery will be in larger, more efficient spaces with state-of-the-art technology throughout the facility.”

She added that the expansion also will provide a better environment for staff to provide essential care for patients.

“As one of Arizona's only academic medical centers, one of the most positive impacts will be the total investment in the university's College of Medicine and in the facilities,” Teller said.

Banner Health Enters

Long-Term Agreement

Banner Health, an Arizona-based nonprofit organization with hospitals in seven states, acquired Banner-University Medical Center Tucson this past spring in a merger with the University of Arizona Health Network. At the same time, Banner Health entered into a 30-year academic affiliation agreement with the University of Arizona to serve as the primary clinical partner to the University of Arizona Colleges of Medicine in Tucson and Phoenix.

Masonry Block Enhances Look

Design of the tower's exteriors and interiors includes features found in many of Banner Health's newer buildings. A masonry block, sometimes referred to as “Banner Block” is being used on the exterior as well as in a few key interior areas to provide the signature Banner Health look.

Construction of the hospital includes a deep concrete foundation system, a structural steel frame and reinforced concrete poured over the steel framing decks.

The interior design will utilize window views of the Tucson area's Catalina Mountains in several patient and family waiting spaces.

Steel Erection of Tower

Underground utility work is largely complete for the tower project. Foundation systems are in and the steel frame is going up. The first concrete deck was placed on Sept. 13.

A crane was in place during initial construction during summer and a second larger crane is now used to handle a portion of the steel erection. Hauling trucks also are part of the construction site.

Construction of the hospital tower will require 4,980 tons (4,518 t) of structural steel; 18,797 cu. yds. (14,371 cu m) of concrete; 523 ft. (159 m) of vertical stairs; 1.05 million lbs. (476,272 kg) of ductwork; 90,000 linear ft. (27,432 m) of sprinkler pipe; 208 mi. (334.75 km) of conduit; and 867 mi. (1,395 km) of conductor wire.

In addition to constructing the new patient tower, Sundt I DPR will renovate two floors and the lobby of Diamond Children's Medical Center located on the same campus. The joint venture also will remodel the original hospital building, which opened in 1971 as University Hospital.

The original building will be used for non-patient-care uses such as administration offices.

Maximize Safety, Minimize Noise

Five neighborhoods are adjacent to the project. Banner Health staff worked with the neighborhood association leaders and residents during the rezoning and design processes.

The staff is now continuing communication for the construction process. To address noise in the early morning hours, a hotline was established to help neighbors contact project staff directly.

Minor Delays

Heavy monsoonal rains this past summer resulted in significant storm water on site. However, the construction team was prepared with temporary storm water lines that worked effectively and minimized downtime on the project site.