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Hamilton Health Sciences earmarked for up to $1.5 billion from Infrastructure Ontario

Dena Fehir
Hamilton Health Sciences earmarked for up to $1.5 billion from Infrastructure Ontario

Hamilton, Ont.’s Juravinski Hospital and West Lincoln Memorial Hospital (WLMH) in Grimsby are figured in for up to $1.5 billion in hospital rebuilds by Infrastructure Ontario (IO).

A recent IO projects update report has $1 billion listed for Juravinski Hospital on the east mountain and up to $499 million for the WLMH.

With these budgeted funds coming forth during the COVID-19 situation, Kelly Campbell, vice-president of corporate services and capital development with Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) said, “Overall, these two projects are desperately needed for the health of people in our region. We are grateful that the province recognizes this and is moving forward with them despite the pandemic.”

The HHS Juravinski redevelopment project will involve the renovation and expansion of the site to upgrade the hospital’s aging infrastructure. This will be phase two of the project, phase one was completed in 2011.

This most recent development includes the replacement of the E, F and M wings with modern towers that will also include space for growth. It is now in the early planning stages, with an RFQ expected to be released in fall 2023 and RFP in spring 2024.


Planning work well underway for West Lincoln Memorial Hospital project

On a much earlier timeline is the WLMH redevelopment, with planning work already well underway, an RFQ expected to be released later this fall and financial close expected in 2022.

The project involves the replacement of the existing facility with a new, larger hospital on the same site. Its features include 24-hour emergency care; maternal/newborn health for low-risk births;

community surgery, featuring an innovative day surgery model with four surgical suites including endoscopy and minor procedures (an increase of two new surgical suites); community medicine, with a focus on healthy aging and senior care; specialty clinics, including a General Internal Medicine Rapid Assessment Clinic and sub-specialty clinics; and advanced diagnostics, including X-ray, mammography, echocardiography and ultrasound and CT scanner.


Working under original budget assumptions

This is the first time that the WLMH project is included in IO’s $200 to $499 million budget range report. The Grimsby hospital has been included in IO’s updates for almost two-years. This latest fall market update standing is an increase from the “Less than $200 million” budget range the Grimsby hospital has been working toward.

“I get the excitement about this project, we’re really excited too,” said Bart DeVries, HHS director of redevelopment projects. “Based on my experience with large scale infrastructure projects, this is to be expected. It’s important to note that this development doesn’t mean there have been any significant changes to our planning. The difference between the previous budget range (less than $200 million) and the new budget range ($200 million to $499 million) could be $1. At the end of the day, the market will dictate what the true value of the project will be and that’s still a little way down the road.”

DeVries explains the budget refinement process will continue as they proceed through stage three towards construction. They are still working under the original budget assumptions.

Once a winning bid of private sector teams is selected by IO and HHS a fixed-price contract value will be released.


“Grateful for the provincial government’s continued commitment”

The ongoing global pandemic is a probable factor in the incurrence of unexpected costs for which a contingency is included due to the impact on material supply chains.

WLMH is aiming to submit their stage two plan to the ministry by the end of October. The RFQ will be posted later this fall and prequalified teams will be named in early 2021 and will be invited to respond to RFPs later in the year.

Upon completion, it will be 30 per cent larger than the current facility; will focus on modern approaches to care and expanded clinic space to bring specialty consultant services closer to West Niagara.

WLMH is a community facility, caring for West Niagara residents for over 70 years and also serves as a point of access to one of the largest health systems in Canada for patients requiring more specialized care.

“We’re grateful for the provincial government’s continued commitment to helping advance health care in the Hamilton and West Niagara communities,” said Rob MacIsaac, president and CEO of HHS. “We look forward to ongoing collaboration as we work to rebuild the futures of our West Lincoln and Juravinski sites.”

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