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MCCARTHY 9/13/07 4:28 PM Page 41

struction programs in the United States, tions,” Dumke says. “They went the extra PD), an organization also responsible for
driven mostly by patient demand and mile and tried to get us involved as enforcing seismic codes.
California’s seismic regulations. Kaiser is quickly as possible.” State seismic safety legislation SB1953
two years into a 10-year, $24 billion plan Headquartered in St. Louis, McCarthy is one of the most-pressing issues facing
to invest in its medical facilities. Building Cos. specializes in construction, California’s healthcare organizations and
Included in the healthcare provider’s design/build and construction manage- contractors. Legislation was passed in 1994
plan is upgrading existing hospitals and ment for the healthcare, industrial, ed- following the Northridge earthquake,
medical office buildings, entry into new ucational, office and retail segments. Mc- which had caused 23 hospitals to halt
markets and renovating older facilities to Carthy operates from five regional divi- part or all of their services and resulted
comply with modern seismic require- sions, including one in Newport Beach, in an excess of $3 billion in hospital-re-
ments. Between 2005 and 2015, Kaiser Calif., where Dumke is based. Now, with lated damages. The public policy is meant
intends to build 11 new hospitals, ex- more than 2,500 employees, the compa- to ensure that the state’s healthcare sys-
pand four existing hospitals and replace ny is the nation’s 10th-largest general con- tems continue to operate smoothly fol-
16 hospitals, it says. tractor with 2006 revenues exceeding lowing a natural disaster such as an earth-
Designed by CO Architects of Los Ang- $2.3 billion. quake. A report issued by the California
eles, the exterior of the Panorama City “We are very client-focused and we’re a Healthcare Foundation estimates these
building was designed with plaster, metal full-service type of builder, which is a de- seismic safety goals will require about 50
panels and glass. The six-level, 218-bed parture from some of our competition,” percent of the state’s hospital floor space
hospital will include a state-of-the-art in- Dumke asserts. “What really stands out to be reconstructed.
patient care diagnostic and treatment fac- more so than other firms is that we also But according to many contractors –
ility, which will encompass critical and value repeat business, hence the Kaiser McCarthy included – the mandates will
acute care nursing, in and outpatient sur- Permanente projects. About 80 percent be difficult if not impossible to meet by
gery, labor and delivery and a neonatal in- of our work is with repeat clients.” the set deadlines because of cost and
tensive care unit. At the project’s peak, schedule delays.
roughly 40 subcontractors were on site. Impact of Legislation Under current deadlines, all general
“We were fortunate that [CO Archit- Today, hospital construction in the state acute-care inpatient hospital buildings
ects] was proactive, understood our is overseen by the Office of Statewide must meet specific requirements by Jan.
needs and reacted quickly to our ques- Health Planning and Development (OSH- 1, with the possibility of an extension

OCTOBER 2007 ■ CONSTRUCTION TODAY ■ 41