Project Progressing as Planned, to be Completed in 2018
By Paul Burton
Construction of the replacement hospital for the California Pacific Medical Center’s St. Luke’s Campus at Cesar Chavez and Guerrero streets is progressing as scheduled. A partnership formed by Herrero Builders and The Boldt Company is acting as the general contractor for Sutter’s CPMC hospitals at the intersection of Van Ness Ave. and Geary Blvd. as well as at St. Luke’s. Construction of the two new hospitals will cost $2 billion and employ up to 1,500 workers in the construction trades over the life of the project.
A crew of about 20 laborers and operating engineers with Ryan Engineering were finishing up the excavation and grading at St. Luke’s when Organized Labor visited the jobsite in early February. Other crews from Condon and Johnson were drilling and installing piers in preparation for concrete pours. Pankow is the subcontractor for the concrete work, with Alamillo Rebar doing the rebar. Alamillo built the pre-fab rebar framework for the piers offsite, and many of the 80 rebar piers have been placed around the perimeter of the site.
Miquel Penn, HerreroBoldt’s manager of Workforce Development and Public Relations, said other contractors include Lawson Roofing for the waterproofing; Herrick Steel, which will begin erecting the structural steel in August; and San Francisco-based Harrison Drywall for the metal stud framing. Rosendin Electric is the subcontractor for the electrical work, data systems and fire alarms; and Southland Industries, based in Union City, will do the design-build for the HVAC and plumbing work. The hospitals are being built with all-union crews.
According to HerreroBoldt’s Construction Management Plan, foundation work at St. Luke’s will take about six months, with steel erection and concrete decks built from August 2015 until May 2016. Exterior enclosure work and the interior build will follow and take around 30 months. When completed by mid-2018, the new 120-bed, seven-story St. Luke’s hospital will be state-of-the-art and seismically safe, and will include services such as inpatient care, diagnostics and treatment, intensive care, and labor and recovery. The existing hospital at the corner of Cesar Chavez and Valencia will be torn down and replaced with medical offices.
The development agreement between San Francisco and the California Pacific Medical Center calls for CPMC to contribute $4 million to the city’s workforce training programs. These programs help prepare prospective workers for construction and permanent jobs. The agreement includes a Local Hire and Workforce Training component that calls for hiring at least 30 percent of all construction workers from San Francisco. Penn said the project is exceeding local hiring goals at this phase, with 56 percent of journeymen and apprentices hours going to San Francisco residents. (That number is 36 percent when the St. Luke’s site is combined with the Van Ness and Geary Campus). Additionally, 100 percent of the entry-level positions for union apprenticeship candidates (pre-apprentices) and non-union administration positions are local hires, exceeding the goal of 50 percent laid out in the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Entry-level positions for engineering internships are also meeting local hiring goals.
San Francisco Building Trades Executive Secretary-Treasurer Mike Theriault said the new apprentices would receive quality on-the-job training at the projects because, “hospital construction is very complicated,” and that, “We in the union trades are the people to do it. We train our folks to a higher level than our competition.”
Tom Guardino, HerreroBoldt’s General Superintendent for the St. Luke’s project, said Sutter did a great job choosing the team of contractors and subcontractors, many of whom have extensive experience on hospital projects. A member of Carpenters Local 217 for 20 years, Guardino said he had worked at CPMC’s Davies Campus for four and a half years and had worked with subcontractors Rosendin Electric and Southland in the past.
“Hospital construction has the highest level of complexity,” Guardino said, citing life-saving equipment, air supply systems, computer and data systems, high tech testing equipment such as CAT scanners, and the need for a clean and safe environment.
CPMC spokesman Dean Fryer said he was pleased with the commitment to safety on the job among the construction crews, and their level of professionalism. “They are great to work with,” he said. “They know what they are doing and how to go about their job in a way that provides the greatest level of safety for their workers.”
The project will meet LEED goals for energy efficiency and sustainable building practices. A CPMC press release noted that, “Replacing and modernizing a hospital poses unique challenges. [Architects] SmithGroupJJR and Boulder Associates have delivered a lightweight structural system that significantly improves the resource and energy effectiveness of the replacement hospital at the St. Luke’s Campus. Incorporating a 100 percent filtered outside air system, highly-diverse vegetated exteriors, healthy building materials and water conservation tactics will result in a setting that promotes the health of patients, staff and visitors.”