Medical Construction Fever Pitch

Medical Construction Fever Pitch

Business is definitely good for Indiana contractors who serve the healthcare industries. Hospital and medical construction projects are currently exploding in our state and are taking shape at the behest of almost every major hospital group.

There are all kinds of new buildings underway. Existing facilities are seeing modernizations, renovations, and expansions. Entire new hospitals are popping up, and an array of new smaller-model hospitals are being established in communities to meet rising demand. At the moment, there are literally two $1 billion hospital projects planned for the Indianapolis and Carmel regions situated just a few miles apart. It’s a great time for construction in healthcare.

We’ve gathered some project highlights for you to check out. But take note, this is only a sampling. There are many more where these came from. Take a look.


IU’s New Regional Health Center, a Game-Changer for Bloomington
Investment total: $389 million
Construction Manager: F.A. Wilhelm Construction Co., Inc.
Architect: HOK

Rendering of the upcoming IU Health Regional Academic Center.

Construction recently began on the largest single economic development investment in the city of Bloomington’s history. The new Indiana University Health Regional Academic Center, which will include a new IU Health Bloomington Hospital as well as the university’s academic and research facilities, will truly be a game-changer for the way health care and research take place in the region.

The 735,000-square-foot complex will house Indiana University Health Bloomington inpatient and outpatient services as well as a 115,000-square-foot academic facility that will be used for health sciences education and research at Indiana University.

The new state-of-the-art facility will bring together multiple medical specialties and outpatient services in one convenient setting. It will also provide a unique and innovation-driven environment in which IU and IU Health can partner to teach future generations of healthcare professionals. More than 500 physicians, team members, educators, and patients provided their input during the planning phases of the project.

The 620,000-square-foot, five-floor medical facility will improve the patient experience, including greater patient privacy through the use of patient transport areas not visible to the general public. The outpatient portion will include a comprehensive cancer center, specialty physician offices, surgical suites, a minor-procedure area, and a diagnostic center.

Other features of the campus include a women’s center for obstetrics, a neonatal intensive care nursery, outpatient surgical facilities, an emergency department, and trauma center specializing in care for conditions such as strokes, heart attacks, and limb injuries. Also, the campus will also have a facility that will be dedicated to the education of university students studying various health science disciplines.

The center will be LEED certified and will be environmentally friendly, incorporating water quality and conservation strategies, energy-efficiency features, sustainable/recycled materials, and indoor environment quality amenities. Its design incorporates traditional IU elements into its appearance, including Indiana limestone blended with brick highlights, a staple of the university’s health facilities throughout the state. An abundance of glass will allow for natural light to stream through a multistory atrium and main entry.

Special intent was paid to how students and faculty will interact with providers, nurses, and other medical professionals, including the creation of shared spaces.

“The Regional Academic Health Center will considerably expand the opportunities for health sciences education and research for cutting-edge programs in interprofessional education, as well as keep up with the increasing demand for practical experience for students in health-related disciplines, especially medicine, social work, nursing, hearing and speech sciences, public health, medical sciences, and dentistry,” said Tom Morrison, vice president for capital planning and facilities at IU.

The new medical campus is scheduled to open sometime in 2020.


Initial Phases of Lutheran Health’s Massive Half-Billion Dollar Expansion
Investment total: $500+ million overall, $10 million for outpatient center
General contractor (outpatient center): Witwer Construction, Inc.
Architect (outpatient center): Moake Park Group, Inc.

Rendering of the Lutheran Health Wabash facility.

Construction recently wrapped up on Lutheran Health Network’s new 30,000-square-foot outpatient center in Wabash, one of the initial components of the hospital group’s multi-year plan to invest over half a billion dollars into its facilities.

Lutheran Health Wabash, located at 1700 S. Alber St., houses primary care physician practices, a physical therapy and rehabilitation area, an urgent care clinic, a full laboratory, a diagnostic imaging suite, an infusion therapy center, timeshare space for additional specialists, and more. About 36 new jobs were created as result of the project.

“Our focus is to provide added convenience and choice for patients who prefer the range of services we are able to offer,” said Brian Bauer, chief executive officer, Lutheran Health Network. “This outpatient center will bring LHN-affiliated and independent providers together under one roof, which we believe best addresses the unique needs of this community.”

The Alber Street site was chosen based on the easy access it provides for area residents and businesses. This geographically important location comprises the southern and western portions of Lutheran Health Network’s 23-county service area.

Other projects that make up Lutheran’s $500 million plans include:

  • Major Upgrades: Top-to-bottom renovation of Lutheran Hospital to upgrade and update numerous patient and guest services areas with a focus on convenient access, modern design, and efficient patient care.
  • Emergency Department Expansion: Major renovation of the hospital’s emergency department, including a new eight-bed transition unit for short-term patient monitoring, which will free up exam and treatment space during busy periods to improve patient wait times. Phase one of this project will begin the week of May 15.
  • Heart and Vascular Center: Development of a comprehensive outpatient cardiovascular center attached to the existing heart pavilion to bring all specialized services and cardiovascular physician practices to one facility for ease of patient access.
  • Advanced Digestive Treatment Center: Consolidation of two separate endoscopy suites, diagnostic testing, and therapeutics into one advanced care setting to increase availability of procedures for the growing number of patients with digestive concerns.
  • Other New Outpatient Centers: Multiple new outpatient centers providing close-to-home urgent and walk-in care, diagnostic imaging, laboratory, family medicine, therapies, and other healthcare services in counties beyond Allen County.


Deaconess’s Expansion – New Orthopedic and Neuroscience Hospital
Investment total: $135 million
General contractor: Barton Malow Company
Architect: Hafer Architects

Rendering showing what the new Deaconess Orthopedic and Neuroscience Hospital will look like.

Work is nearing completion on Deaconess Health System’s new orthopedic and neuroscience hospital, a new expansion to its Gateway Hospital facility in Newburgh. Due to open this spring, the new six-story, state-of-the-art facility is going to feature an array of specialized care services, including an immediate ortho care center staffed by orthopaedic associates – a first for the region.

Patients needing help for injuries such as broken bones, sprains, and others will benefit from extended hours and immediate access to care. The facility will also have a multi-disciplinary ortho-neuro surgical clinic to provide treatment for complex conditions. There will also be designated orthopedic post-surgical care units specializing in joint replacement recovery.

The expansion will connect to both towers A and B of Gateway Hospital as well as other nearby medical office buildings via an atrium. Architectural designs incorporated as much natural sunlight as possible via a skylight rotunda.

Initially, the new space will start out with 64 patient beds and will have shell space available to expand that total by an additional 32 beds. Each patient room features floor-to-ceiling windows and provides modern conveniences for patients and their families. About 200 new employees will be added as a result of the expansion.

Additionally, Deaconess is adding a five-story, 100,000-square-foot medical office building to the hospital as part of the expansion. This space will include offices for physicians and related services like laboratory and imaging. A new parking garage and major upgrades to the hospital’s energy infrastructure will also be added.


Community Health’s New Stroke & Rehabilitation Center
Investment total = $40 million
General contractor: The Pangere Corporation
Architect: Design Alliance

Rendering of the new Community Health Stroke & Rehabilitation Center.

Work is underway on Community Healthcare System’s new Stroke and Rehabilitation Center, a $40 million facility designed to help stroke patients and others recover faster and with higher-quality outcomes. Located at 10215 Broadway Ave., the facility will be a four-story, 129,000-square-foot multispecialty center that will feature inpatient rehabilitation treatment along with physician practices, outpatient services, and immediate care for family health and wellness. Upon completion, targeted for Spring of 2019, the new center is expected to provide jobs for about 100 full-time employees.

“Studies suggest that for many post-stroke patients, intensive inpatient rehabilitation treatment at an inpatient rehabilitation facility may be the best choice, resulting in enhanced functional outcomes with a shorter length of stay and higher discharge rate. This same high standard of care also applies to patients recovering from neurological conditions and joint replacements,” said Donald P. Fesko, CEO, Community Foundation of Northwest Indiana, Inc., parent company to the healthcare system.

Community Healthcare System medical professionals will provide urgent care, full lab and X-ray services, and testing using the latest generation diagnostic technology, such as MRI, CT, and ultrasound. As services are fully developed, specialists in cardiology, obstetrics and gynecology, urology, and orthopedics will further broaden the scope of health, wellness, and preventative care available to the community.

The first floor will house immediate care, radiology, laboratory services, and outpatient therapy services including physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and physician offices.

Second floor plans call for physician offices and a Women’s Diagnostic Center. The Women’s Diagnostic Center will offer mammography, bone density scanning, and other services, offering the same outstanding care found at the diagnostic centers affiliated with Community Healthcare System hospitals in Munster, East Chicago, and Hobart.

The third and fourth floors will offer 40 private rooms for inpatient rehabilitation care and activity/gym rooms with an apartment for activities of daily living. Therapies provided on these floors are for complex stroke, traumatic brain injury, neurological conditions, and spinal cord treatments.


Riverview Health’s Four New ER/Urgent Care Centers
Investment total: (Undisclosed)
General contractor: Meyer Najem Construction
Architect: E4H Architecture

Rendering of one of the new Riverview Health ER and Urgent Care Centers.

Riverview Health announced plans to build four new freestanding emergency departments with urgent care services all under one roof—the first of their kind in the Indianapolis area. The new centers will be located in north Carmel, west Carmel, Fishers and the Nora area of Indianapolis. Construction will begin this spring with plans for opening all four locations in 2019.

“As the area continues to grow, the demand for urgent and emergency services has too,” said Seth Warren, Riverview Health president and CEO. “Often when unplanned medical needs arise, there’s the question of whether or not to go to the emergency room. With the emergency and urgent care combination, patients will have a single convenient access point close to home and be treated accordingly with the same high-quality healthcare of our full-service hospital in Noblesville.”

The retail model will focus on customer service and treating patients quickly. That means no complicated or lengthy paperwork, no glass partitions, and a treatment process that keeps patients moving. The ER services will be available 24/7, while the Urgent Care hours will be 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. An ER physician, regardless of the level of service needed, will see all patients. However, they will only be billed for the level of care that was provided.

“Many visits to the emergency department could be treated in an urgent care setting at a lower cost,” Warren said. “This model eliminates that discrepancy by billing only for the level of care needed, which has the potential to save money for patients, employers, and communities.”

These retail-centric facilities will each be approximately 10,000 square feet and will be developed under the guidance of commercial real estate firm, Equity, and local construction firm, Meyer Najem.

Riverview Health continues to expand its footprint. With its main campus in Noblesville and a new hospital in Westfield set to open this spring, Riverview Health also has 25 physician practices located throughout Hamilton County.

“Continuing to meet the growing healthcare needs of this community is a top priority,” Warren said. “We’re expanding to meet the need in Westfield and now in these other locations. Our practices have also continued to grow, and we’re expanding our team of doctors to meet this need in several of our medical offices in 2018 and beyond.”

This project is in conjunction with Intuitive Health, an organization located in North Texas that has worked with established health systems throughout the nation to build and manage retail health facilities that specialize in full-service emergency and urgent care services in a licensed hospital outpatient department.



At a Glance: Other Major Hospital Projects

With so many projects happening around Indiana, we simply couldn’t fit them all in one article. Take a look at some of the other project highlights:

$50 million – Franciscan Health is building a new micro-hospital in Johnson County. The 108,000-square-foot Franciscan Health Stones Crossing micro-hospital, emergency center, and outpatient medical complex, located at 1703 West Stones Crossing Road at State Road 135 in Greenwood, is expected to be completed by winter 2018.


$48 million – Hendricks Regional Health’s new Brownsburg hospital celebrated its opening early this year. According to Hendricks officials, the new 100,000 square-foot center features the first side-by-side emergency department and immediate care center in the nation. As a result of the project, the organization is adding over 100 new employees.


$44 million – Schneck Medical Center broke ground on a major expansion project earlier this year. The multi-year, multi-phase expansion will be built on the northwest side of the main campus along Tipton Street and will include a five-story, 80,000-square-foot medical office building and a parking garage. Completion of the project is expected in 2019.