Jeff Boyer -IB
Jeff Boyer, project director for McCarthy Building Companies Inc., in front of the Good Samaritan Regional Health Center, Mount Vernon, Ill.

McCarthy Building Companies Inc. does about 45 percent of its work on projects of various sizes in the health care sector. 

One of its most recent has been the new 134-bed, 359,000-square-foot Good Samaritan Regional Health Center in Mount Vernon, Ill. The contractor recently topped out the replacement hospital and broke ground on a 141,000-square-foot medical office building.

The $140-million hospital project doubles the size of the existing facility and is about 30 percent complete. It includes eight observation beds and all private patient rooms.

The medical office building connected to the hospital includes a surgery center and outpatient diagnostic services. Both concrete and structural steel buildings have brick and stone veneer, include five floors over a garden level, and are planned to be completed in time for use in late 2012.

McCarthy and its Jefferson County-based partners, Shores Builders and Lipps Construction, broke ground on the hospital project in April 2010 and expect to complete their work by October of 2012. The contractor broke ground on the medical office building in March of this year. McCarthy expects to complete the $14.5 million core and shell portion and lobby of the medical office building in the spring of 2012, with completion of the interiors aligning with the October completion of the hospital.

Management, Modeling

McCarthy is acting as the construction manager for both projects (which were designed by BSA LifeStructures). Both the design and construction processes include a number of innovations, the company said:

• Room design that incorporates short distances between the bed and bathroom to minimize risk of patient falls.

• Energy performance-rated high-efficiency heating and cooling systems.

• Decentralized nursing stations to reduce the distance between patients and caregivers.

• A “family zone” in each private room that allows for family members to stay overnight.

The contractor said it has been using building information modeling (BIM), Bluebeam software, and prefabrication to improve construction efficiency and coordination on the project. The project’s partners and subcontractors coordinate three-dimensional images of the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) systems on a smart board in McCarthy’s onsite BIM lab, which is virtually linked to McCarthy’s home-office lab.

BIM allows the project team to create a model for use in the field, incorporating submittals, installation sequencing, and startup sequencing to the model to expedite construction.

“BIM models have expanded well beyond MEP systems to include the structure, building enclosure, framing, drywall, equipment and more,” said project manager Andrew Poirot. “The use of virtual planning helps to avoid issues during installation.”

The contractor said it also is improving efficiency by using prefabrication on the project in a more innovative way. Crews are assembling wall sections of patient bathrooms and patient room head walls — these include the electrical and plumbing systems — in a local warehouse. They are later delivered to the site for installation.

The company also said project collaboration starts early, integrating key members of the hospital staff with design and construction teams to maximize project success. “Measuring reliability and performance starts immediately,” states the contractor’s website. The goal, of course, is to deliver each job on time and under budget.

These particular projects have both added jobs to the area. The contractor said between 120 and 150 tradespersons have been at work daily on the 36-acre site. At the peak of construction, the company said approximately 350 to 400 tradespersons will be working on the hospital site. An additional 50 to 60 persons will be put to work on the medical office building project.

In addition, the project is expected to create approximately 112 permanent health care jobs at the hospital and surgery center by the third full year of operation, and some additional 40 physician office positions.

Founded in 1864 and headquartered in St. Louis, McCarthy Building Companies has constructed more than 800 significant health care facilities and renovated thousands more. The company is 100 percent employee owned.

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Publication date: 10/31/2011