It’s easy to see the progress from the outside, as the Bendigo Hospital Project takes shape. The striking façade invites us to look at its aesthetic design from many perspectives, be it north, south, east or west. And with each aspect, new parts of the hospital are featured, including the prominent panels which consist of 14,000 square metres of glazing.
What is harder to appreciate is what is happening inside the building which includes painting, flooring, and cladding. Gradually too, the rooms are being installed with equipment – from surgical pendant systems needed in operating theatre and delivery rooms for anaesthesia surgical purposes to linear accelerator (LINAC) machines which are used to treat cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy. The striking ‘main street’ internal entrance continues to be fitted-out, with the glazing, timber panels, floor paving and revolving door adjacent to Mercy Street, taking shape.
On the site
The construction activity at the Bendigo Hospital Project is on-schedule and continues to meet expectations in every way. Currently the project has around 430 workers onsite, whereas at its peak there was a total of 790 workers onsite, a project milestone in itself. Activity has shifted; we’re focusing on how to make this facility operate as a hospital, and that’s why we require highly skilled technicians rather than large numbers of tradespeople to construct a building.
Outside there’s much activity on the south side of Drought Street, where civil and road works are in progress, including forming footpaths, asphalting and line-marking. This activity forms part of the emergency department (ED) entrance and the ambulance bay, as workers finish a vital area which will be used for the delivery of both ambulant and non-ambulant (trolley bound) patients to ED by the ambulance service. From this area, along to Hope Street – footpaths are being prepared, and irrigation systems installed along the hospital’s frontage for future landscaping uses.
Bendigo Health continues its work restoring the heritage West Wing and Concert Hall buildings on the Anne Caudle Centre precinct, with a contractor onsite and approximately 20 personnel.
Facilities management company Spotless is currently testing equipment as it prepares to open the new hospital kitchen in July. Rigorous inspections and reviews are taking place – for instance cool rooms, chiller systems, dishwashing equipment and an eWater System that’s been installed throughout the kitchen to provide cleaning and sanitising solutions, are all being checked for quality and operational effectiveness.
Certainly the Bendigo Hospital Project is well on its way to substantial completion of ‘stage one’ as we look forward to, in anticipation, its opening in late January 2017.