Sutter Health, Eden Medical Center
Medical office buildings

Courtesy of DPR Construction

The land for the new medical office building has been cleared and the pad is being graded to make room for the construction to begin in September.

grading

The kitchen is taking shape as the heavy equipment arrives. The bread and pizza oven is set into place:

oven

The kitchen hoods are set:

hoods

The large walk-in freezers are also set into place:

freezers

Site Clearing Begins for Medical Office Building

Work begins on Monday, August 1, to grade the land in preparation for the new Medical Office Building adjacent to the hospital construction. We’ll be changing the WebCam to show the work on that end of the construction site. Just so you don’t miss the new hospital in the meantime, we’ll maintain a glimpse of the main hospital where most major exterior work on the building is complete.

To make room for this 80,000-square-foot building, crews will move the fencing outward and begin clearing the site. The fence along the parking garage will be moved out, eliminating the pedestrian walkway along the vehicle exit. As a result, all pedestrians will be directed to the temporary wood bridge for safe crossing to the Emergency Department entrance.

pedestrian-walkway

Groundbreaking for the new building is expected in mid-September, and work will continue for approximately 14 months. When complete, the building will have three pedestrian bridges to the new hospital for better access by physicians and staff.

Work also continues around the campus as the underground utilities are installed. Please proceed with caution when driving on campus!

by George Bischalaney,President & CEO, Eden Medical Center

george

Planning for the construction of the medical office building adjoining the new Eden Medical Center has started in earnest. While the hospital itself has been under construction for a year now, the medical office building project was staged to begin at a later time when, so that both buildings are complete and open at the same time in 2013.

The office building is anticipated to be four stories and provide more than 80,000 square feet of space to house physicians and some hospital staff and services. The building will be connected to the hospital at each of the four levels, providing quick access by providers and staff using the building through controlled access points.  The general public will have open access from the ground level.  We intentionally planned for some hospital support staff to be in the building. We want to preserve as much space in the hospital building itself for clinical space and patient needs.

Programming, or definition of specific spaces in the building, is now underway. This means defining space on each level by occupant and provider type. An important part of this planning is the space designated for the Urgent Care Center, which will be located on the ground floor of the office building and close to the future hospital Emergency Department. In addition to planning for the scope of care and space for the Urgent care Center, we need to designate the necessary support space and establish initial plans for how the center will work in conjunction with the Emergency Department when they open.

Throughout the planning process, there remains a commitment to provide the Urgent Care Center. Ideally, it will offer a faster, lower cost venue for non-emergent needs of patients. This is much needed in our community and definitely in line with national and regional health care reform principles.

Main Entrance

By Cassandra Clark, Project Communications Director

After much debate and public input, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to certify the EIR (Environmental Impact Report) and approve the zoning and land use entitlements for the new hospital to replace 54-year-old Eden Medical Center.

Passage of the EIR and land use entitlement approvals is a major milestone for the Sutter Medical Center Castro Valley project—and the communities that will be served by this new, state-of-the-art hospital and adjoining medical office building.

About 20 speakers addressed the Board of Supervisors about the new hospital as well as concerns about future plans for San Leandro Hospital. Eden President & CEO George Bischalaney expressed to the Board members the overwhelming support for the new hospital, even among those who encouraged rejection of the EIR to “save San Leandro Hospital.” Bischalaney and others urged Board members not to delay approvals in order to meet “a very tight project timeline” and advised the Board not to tie the new hospital project to the uncertainty around San Leandro Hospital’s future.

In the end, the Board of Supervisors maintained that its obligation was to make a decision on the land use entitlement proposal before them. However, Board members promised to continue to work with Sutter and the District to come up with an optimal plan for San Leandro Hospital, and to meet the health care needs of the communities.

We are grateful to the many people of Eden Medical Center, San Leandro Hospital and our communities for participating in this process. We had tremendous support at both Board of Supervisors meetings, through the petitions, and all the phone calls and letters of encouragement.

What Happens Now?

The Board’s approval clears the way for SMCCV to use the designated property to build the new hospital, which will be on the northwest side of the Eden Medical Center campus, adjacent to the existing hospital.

In the coming weeks, we will file the appropriate permits to begin work on the land, including the demolition of the vacant apartment building and other site improvements, and the foundation work for the actual construction of the new hospital. Oversight and approval for the further construction is handled by the
California Office of Statewide Health Planning & Development.

The immediate work around the campus will get the land ready for construction and help minimize delays so we can proceed with building the new hospital as soon as possible in order to meet the deadline for State-mandated earthquake safety requirements.

We look forward to moving ahead with the project. As always, your questions and comments are welcome on this blog and on our social networks!

By Cassandra Clark, Project Communications Director

We recently received a comment on our site regarding the relocation of Sazio’s Ristorante Italiano, located across and down the street from Eden Medical Center on Lake Chabot Road. The person asked, “How are you being a good neighbor by driving out a small family-owned business like Sazio’s without any relocation assistance?”

Like every issue, there is more to the story than what appears in the newspapers or is talked about in private circles. That’s why a blog is a great place to raise issues and open up a conversation.

Sazio’s restaurant has been in the same location for many years. They are wonderful people, serving excellent food (the ravioli is my favorite). The restaurant is located on a piece of property that includes single story medical office buildings and a few storefronts, where a sushi restaurant and barbershop were once located. Karen’s Flower Kottage was also on the site before they moved to a new location.

The property was sold to the Eden Township Healthcare District (not Sutter Health or Eden Medical Center) about three years ago. Since the purchase, the District has planned for medical office buildings and related parking to be built on the land.

While I do not speak for the District, it is important to know that every tenant of the property was fully informed that the site would eventually be converted to another use. All existing leases were honored through their expiration dates, or the tenant moved voluntarily, prior to the end of the lease. The owners of Sazio’s chose to wait, rather than take opportunities to move during the past three years. Ultimately, representatives from the District and Sazio’s will determine what lies ahead.

It is also worth noting that the plans for that site are not part of the Sutter Medical Center Castro Valley project. Our project is specifically for the construction of the new hospital and adjacent medical office building, site improvements and eventual deconstruction of the old hospital.

While at first glance it may appear to be all one big construction project on Lake Chabot Road, it is not. We have different owners, different plans, different processes and approvals and even different timeframes. What we have in common is our community’s healthcare needs. The District’s project will benefit physicians in the community—some of whom will be displaced when the new hospital work begins—by providing much needed medical space for their busy practices.

As always, we welcome your questions and comments, and we’ll respond as quickly as possible.


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