In April 2012 the DPR-led project team for Palomar Medical Center, in Escondido, California, scored a major success when California’s Office of Statewide Health and Planning Development (OSHPD) granted permission to “staff and stock” the facility four days earlier than originally planned, following an arduous four-year construction process.
Achieving this milestone was all the more notable in light of the highly challenging and intensive journey the team faced when it took over the construction management (CM) of the $660-million (construction cost) project in 2008, after construction had already begun in 2007. Even with reshaping the construction process midstream the team met the critical target date for delivering this landmark healthcare facility, which opened to the public in August.
Designed by CO Architects, and dubbed the “hospital of the future” for its many cutting-edge features, the 740,000-sq.-ft., 11-story Palomar Medical Center accommodates up to 360 patient beds, 12 operating rooms, a 50-room trauma center, a 60,000-sq.-ft. undulating green roof and a 40,000-sq.-ft. central plant, among other features. The hospital incorporates many sustainable design principles and reflects the owner’s commitment to creating not only a healing environment for patients, but one that also supports the well-being of the staff through features such as skylights and light wells that deliver natural lighting into employee-only spaces.
The team made a midstream shift to a hybrid integrated project delivery model and kicked of the process with a series of meetings between the owner, Palomar Health, the architect and engineering team, an outside facilitator, Lou Bainbridge, and key trade contractors to align goals and expectations and establish a high-performance team to focus on continuous improvement and project/team success.
Also intrinsic to the project delivery are sustainable design concepts; the new hospital has been designed to use a minimum amount of water and electricity, contains recycled or renewable materials, as well as special features to enhance a healing environment, including a living roof over the Diagnostics and Testing block, split level terraces on all nursing floors and courtyards within the Diagnostics and Testing wing. The third floor also includes a roof terrace for outdoor dining activities.