New hospital update: Construction entering final stages for new UPHS – Marquette facility

With UP Health System — Marquette’s new hospital set to open in nine months, the construction process is in its final stages of completion.

“We got finishes going in on all the floors,” said Dan Balow, Vice President of Operations at Skanska USA Building Inc. “Drywall is all the way up to the seventh floor; window installation is finishing and brick is finishing, and there’s painting on floor seven. All the mechanical equipment is up and running. The site work is ongoing.”

On the first floor, the ultrasound and x-ray areas are purposely designed to be next to the emergency room to maximize efficiency. With many of the rooms on the lower floors being completed, equipment will start to be installed in the next two months. MRI machines were moved in on Aug. 21.

Outside, the foundation for the helicopter pad has been installed with concrete laid out. Those sidewalks will be heated as well.

With the large window exterior, natural light will fill the hospital during the day. One area that will experience this type of lighting is the employee cafeteria.

The elevators have been installed and are functioning, allowing one to view the panoramic views of Marquette. On the fifth floor, you can look north and see the helicopter pad, the ore dock and the lake.

On the upper floors, some of the patient’s rooms have been built, including the restroom area; those rooms feature two windows that provide a scenic view.

Rooms for the cath lab have also been constructed and will receive equipment installation in the coming months, similar to the radiation room.

With the state-of-the-art hospital spanning more than 500,000 square feet, all of the local labor has been utilized, meaning other workers from out of the state have arrived to assist with the construction of the facility.

“I think the location is really unique with us putting labor in from Wisconsin, Minnesota and downstate,” Balow said. “It’s a different challenge pulling people in and having so many travelers on the job. These guys have all built before, so it’s just a matter of getting people in the right job so they can succeed.”

On a normal day, there are 325 to 400 workers on site. The first crew starts to arrive at 5 a.m. and works until 5:30 p.m. Around 3 p.m., another crew and foremen show up and stay until 2 or 3 a.m. in the morning so they don’t have to work around everyone else.

In a central location off the highway, the new hospital will provide easier access to regional healthcare services for our U.P. communities. The hospital is set to open in the Spring of 2019.

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