Martha's Vineyard Hospital construction on track
Adjacent to the ramshackle building it will replace, the new Martha's Vineyard Hospital, after years of planning, permitting, and fundraising, is taking shape. The building exterior, to be covered in brick, is now clad in yellow weather seal. The steel framework for the pitched roof that will cover a variety of mechanical equipment has yet to be fully sheathed.
But the building project is on schedule for its February 2010 completion (see an exterior view). "If things keep going the way they are going, we think January is a safe bet," said Connie Bulman, hospital project manager.
Photos by Ralph Stewart
Mr. Bulman and Tim Walsh, the hospital chief executive, took a group of doctors and a Times reporter for a tour of the unfinished hospital interior on March 27. Only metal studs and wiring set off the dedicated spaces in the cavernous interior, but that did not hobble the doctors in the tour group, as they picked their way around the construction in progress, imagining the spaces where they will work. One week earlier, Mr. Bulman took a group of hospital administrators for a tour.
Physicians who now work in the cramped confines of a wooden building opened in 1974, greeted the prospect of new, more spacious and modern facilities enthusiastically. As the group walked along what will be a corridor in the surgical area, the large windows impressed surgeon Denise Fraser. "The only thing I wanted we got," she said. "Natural light."
There are two operating rooms and pre- and post-surgical patient recovery rooms. Anesthesiologist Dr. Steve London said he was pleased to see pipes that will supply surgical air, sanitized air used in the operating room. Now, he must bring pressurized tanks into the operating room. "Sometimes I feel like a scuba diver," said Dr. London.
The first floor houses the surgery, radiology, and emergency departments, a laboratory, and the admitting area. There is also room for a small research library and waiting area.
The main hospital entrance opens to an airy foyer set at the base of a tower designed to provide natural light, and it leads to the admitting area. There are separate entrances for the emergency department for walk-in patients and those who arrive by ambulance.