Kitchell Corp. has completed the first phase of construction on the new Valleywise Health Medical Center. The general contractor placed the final beam on the 673,000-square-foot, 10-story building meant to replace the current 525-bed medical center and the state’s only public teaching hospital, an aging facility from the 70s, serving low-income patients. The new development is slated for a 2023 completion.
Kitchell broke ground on the project last February, implementing plans designed by EYP and Cuningham Group. The 233-bed facility is taking shape right next to the current medical center at 2601 E. Roosevelt St. Upon completion, the new medical center will house Arizona Burn Center on one floor with its own external entrance, a Level One Trauma emergency department and 14 operating rooms, as well as various other health-care specialty spaces.
The development is some 2 miles east of Wexford Innovation Center, a 227,100-square-foot new building within the 30-acre Phoenix Biomedical Campus.
In the making since 2012
In 2012, the Maricopa Integrated Health System (the future Valleywise Health) Board acknowledged the need for replacing existing facilities, as well as building new ones and improving the patients’ access to care and put into motion the Care Reimagined program. One of the targeted facilities was Maricopa Medical Center, which needed a new building since the old one was decaying and couldn’t withstand any more remodeling works.
In 2014, the health system borrowed $935 million from Maricopa County as a result of voters approving Proposition 480, an act by which the county hospital committed to selling bonds to be paid back through higher property taxes. The funds were to be used for the construction of a new Maricopa Medical Center as well as for the acquisition of Maryvale Hospital, the construction of the MIHS West Valley Primary & Specialty Care Center in Peoria, Ariz., and the purchase of four land parcels for future ambulatory clinics in the metro.
In 2018, MIHS received approval from the Maricopa County Special Health Care District Board of Directors to change its name to Valleywise Health. That same year, the hospital board selected Kitchell, Cuningham Group and EYP to be part of the development team of the new Valleywise Health Medical Center. Sitework began in 2019.
An array of health-care developments
Valleywise’s new building is only one of the many health-care real estate projects under construction in Phoenix. The largest one is the Mayo Clinic expansion, adding 1.6 million square feet of building space to the existing 1.7 million on its 210-acre campus. Announced in 2018 and slated for completion in 2023, the $748 million expansion project also will add a new emergency department, an outpatient surgery center and a 1,000-space underground patient parking garage. Most recently, the Mayo Clinic Board of Trustees approved the construction of a $131 million, 150,000-square-foot Integrated Education and Research Building expected to be complete by 2024.
Similar developments include the Creighton University Health Sciences campus, a 183,000-square-foot training hospital expected to be completed this August, and the VA Health Care System’s 203,000-square-foot clinic which will provide medical services to veterans starting spring 2022. Other medical campus expansions, such as HonorHealth’s 210,000-square-foot Sonoran Crossing Medical Center, are already part of supply.