Women's College Hospital reaches new heights

'Topping Off' ceremony marks the structural completion of phase one of Women's College Hospital's new facility

TORONTO, June 5, 2012 /CNW/ - The Honourable Dalton McGuinty, Premier of Ontario, the Honourable Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and Women's College Hospital celebrated the official topping off of 'phase one' construction of the hospital's new facility, earlier today. A traditional 'Topping Off' ceremony signifies that the highest point of construction has been reached.

To mark this exciting milestone, and to celebrate the achievements of all those involved in building the Hospital of the Future, staff, physicians, volunteers and key stakeholders signed the last steel beam before it was hoisted into place on the construction site.

Women's College Hospital's redevelopment involves the construction of a new state-of-the-art facility including 440,000 square feet of clinical space and 231,000 square feet of underground parking. Rising at the pinnacle of Toronto's Discovery District, it will fully integrate clinical care, research and education.  Patients will be treated in comprehensive, interprofessional clinics, where people with complex chronic conditions learn how to prevent and manage their diseases, and new models of care will be created to share with the world.

"As we lay this last beam to create the highest point of this new building for Women's College Hospital, we do so knowing that, within its walls, dedicated professionals will reach ever higher to provide excellent care for Ontarians," said Premier McGuinty.

"I am thrilled to see the progress made on the redevelopment of Women's College Hospital," said Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care. "Women's College is a leader when it comes to our Action Plan goal of providing access to the right care, at the right time and in the right place - and this milestone represents another step forward."

Women's College Hospital's president and CEO, Marilyn Emery, shared the Minister's excitement. "Today's celebration marks a significant milestone for Women's College and brings us closer to our vision of advancing the health of women and developing innovative solutions that improve the health system as a whole."

In 2010, Women's College Hospital carried out an unprecedented study asking 1,000 women what they want from a hospital and from health care.

"We incorporated what we learned into the plans for the new Women's College Hospital," adds Emery. "So our new facility will not just be another hospital, but a whole new kind of hospital: a hospital focused on equity and community, and designed around an ambulatory model of care that helps keep people out of hospital. It will provide the type of leading-edge care and unparalleled caring that has been our hallmark for more than 100 years."

Construction of the new facility began in September 2010, and progress is on schedule and on budget. An estimated 300 construction workers will be on site daily at the peak of construction.

Phase one of the new building is expected to be complete in spring 2013 and phase two in 2015.  Women's College Partnership has been contracted to design, build, finance and maintain the new hospital. It is made up of Bilfinger Berger, Perkins Eastman Black, IBI Architects, the Walsh Group, Bondfield Construction and Black and McDonald.

Infrastructure Ontario and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care are working with Women's College Hospital on its redevelopment. The hospital will remain publicly owned, publicly controlled and publicly accountable.

For more information about Women's College Hospital, please visit www.womenscollegehospital.ca.

SOURCE Infrastructure Ontario

For further information:

Jodi Salem
Women's College Hospital
(416) 323-6400 ext. 4054

Tom Boreskie
Infrastructure Ontario
(416) 212-6447

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Infrastructure Ontario

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