$52.3M PMH project targets 12 subcontractors
Enabling works are now in full swing for the $52.3 million critical care block at Princess Margaret Hospital, as top management at Cavalier Construction reveals 12 local sub-contractors will be hired for the job – a move that pushes total employment opportunities to “at least 500”.
Richard Wilson, managing director at Cavalier, told Guardian Business that the company is currently in the process of deciding which companies will benefit from specific work on the project.
“In addition to the general construction, there is major work to be done in mechanics, air conditioning, medical gasses and fire sprinklers, for example,” he said.
“We haven’t decided who is going to do it, but we’ll be using local contractors. They’ll likely have to bring some specialist people in, but the rest is straight forward. We’ll probably need between 10 to 12 subcontractors and I think at its peak the project will have at least 500 workers.”
The spike in employment, fueling one of the largest healthcare projects undertaken by the government in recent memory, comes just head of the official ground breaking ceremony now scheduled for tomorrow.
According to Bob Hall, the project manager at Cavalier, the focus right now is on preparing the parking lots and ensuring employees and patients at the hospital have sufficient space once full-scale construction begins.
“We’re preparing the car park up on Sands Road, opposite the hospital and near the church,” he explained.
“That will be finished by Thursday. Then we’ll be moving over to another car park emptied for us and get that upgraded by adding a new layer of asphalt, new lighting and a security booth.”
Adding that construction “takes up a lot of room”, Hall pointed out the parking lots should provide adequate capacity as work begins on the critical care block.
“It’s to facilitate the hospital,” he added.
“We have to make sure they are able to continue with car parking for patients and staff. We just took a big chunk of their land that would normally be used for parking.”
Also included in the enabling works is establishing the “lay down areas”, which the contractors will call home for the next 19 months.
Wilson explained that the compound will store the contractor’s materials and contain offices and conference rooms.
“That will take about a month by the time we have everything sorted out,” he said.
Hall told Guardian Business there are about 20 works now on site performing these enabling works, and while many of the preparations could take them up until Christmas, he felt the next stage of putting in the foundation and retaining walls could commerce as early as next week.
The new $40 critical care block will include six new operating theaters, a pre-op and post-op area, and 18 ICU private rooms and a neonatal unit.
The lead consultant and architect on the Princess Margaret project, Michael Diggis, called the endeavor a “modernizing of the hospital”, bringing modern equipment and design to the site while maintaining its current history and style.