This article originally appeared on Construction Equipment Guide.
Construction crews building the new Trauma and Critical Care Tower on the campus of Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital in Albany, Ga., signed the structure’s final and highest steel beam Dec. 12 and placed an American flag and a small evergreen tree on it before hoisting it into place by a huge crane.
“This is an exciting milestone for a vital project that will help Phoebe enhance the level of emergency, trauma and critical care available to the people of southwest Georgia, and we look forward to the day we can begin serving patients in this wonderful new facility,” said Deb Angerami, CEO of Phoebe Putney Memorial.
Following the placement of the beam, Birmingham, Ala.-based Hoar Construction, the project’s general contractor, served lunch to its more than 225 employees currently working at the site.
“We are extremely proud to be handling this project which we know will mean so much to this community,” noted David Howe, senior superintendent with Hoar Construction. “Phoebe has been a great partner with us, and our crews have been working really hard and doing outstanding work. It’s nice to take a few minutes to thank them, give them some gifts, and recognize this milestone before we get back to work.”
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When finished, the first floor of the new tower will house an emergency and trauma center. In addition, the hospital’s current emergency center also will be completely renovated to create one large, seamless advanced center.
“We provide lifesaving trauma care every day, and we are excited that our new facility will help us expand our trauma capabilities,” explained Leon Dent, Phoebe Medical’s director of Trauma Services. “We continue to grow our trauma team by recruiting additional trauma specialists as we prepare to seek state designation as a Level II Trauma Center from the [Georgia] Department of Public Health, and verification by the American College of Surgeons.”
Along with adding a more expansive emergency and trauma center, the new four-story tower also will include both a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and an adult intensive care unit. The fourth floor will be reserved for future growth and development, according to a news release on the medical center’s website.
“As part of the topping out [ceremony], we also invited the Phoebe family to sign sheetrock that will be used as interior work progresses,” Angerami said. “Our emergency and trauma, NICU, and critical care teams signed panels that will be placed in their new areas, and other employees were invited to sign panels that will be placed on the fourth floor.
“We hope that symbolic gesture will help them feel a permanent connection to this place where we know they will provide so much exceptional care and superior service in the years to come,” she continued.
With the final steel beam in place, construction on the entire $140 million project is now scheduled for completion by late next summer, with a move-in to follow in stages over the ensuing few months, according to Phoebe Putney Memorial.