July 12, 2005
The Southern Region Blood Services division of the American Red Cross has chosen DPR Construction, Inc. to build an 185,000 square foot blood processing and distribution facility in Douglas County, announced Wayne Brown, chief administrative officer for Southern Region Blood Services.
DPR is a national contractor/construction firm with offices across the country, including Atlanta. The 15-year-old firm specializes in projects for several business sectors including biopharmaceutical and healthcare construction. DPR is to begin work at the Douglasville site by late July with substantial completion expected by January, 2007. DPR was chosen over seven other firms for the Red Cross project.
“Our facility will include state-of-the-art laboratories used for processing blood and platelets as well as blood component storage and the maintenance of our rare blood bank. The construction must adhere to strict regulations determined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,” stated Brown. “It is essential that the builder we use is experienced in the design and construction of a complex, regulated environment and DPR has an impressive background in this area.”
The blood services facility will be built on a 19-acre site in the mixed use community of New Manchester, which is located in the southern part of Douglas County. In addition to blood processing operations and laboratories, the building will house the headquarters for the Southern Region and the Southeast Division of American Red Cross Blood Services as well as a warehouse, and a telerecruiting department.
“As one of the nation’s top biopharmaceutical builders, DPR is pleased to be part of this exciting project. We are looking forward to working closely with the American Red Cross and the architect, Ewing Cole, to provide the highest level of technical expertise to ensure a successful project,” said Andy Andres, southeast regional manager for DPR Construction, Inc.
A portion of the funding for the $37 million facility is being sought through a local Fundraising Campaign Cabinet. This cabinet has secured a $5 million gift from the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation and a $1 million challenge grant pledge from an anonymous foundation. The Red Cross is looking to Georgia’s philanthropic community for additional funding.
The new facility will increase the local blood processing capabilities of the Red Cross, growing from more than 290,000 units of blood processed each year to a processing capacity of 750,000 units per year. This will enable the Red Cross to more efficiently process and distribute blood collected in Georgia and other southeastern states from this one centralized location.
The American Red Cross is currently struggling with a critical blood shortage and rationing blood to hospitals across the country. The organization is urging all eligible blood donors to call 1 800 GIVE LIFE to find the most convenient donor center or blood drive and to give blood right away.