Columbia St. Mary’s today announced that it is slowing down construction of its new east side hospital. Construction is continuing, but at a slower pace. The new hospital is expected to open in fall 2010, instead of January 2010. Leo Brideau, President & CEO, cited the main reason for the slow down is to be prudent and preserve cash to ensure that we are in a position to provide the care the community needs during these uncertain economic times.
"The current economic climate has forced hospitals and other businesses across the country to take a hard look at their building projects as one avenue to preserve cash," said Brideau. "Slowing down construction will enable us to be flexible and maintain a strong cash flow. We are committed to completing this project. It is important to the community."
Therese Pandl, EVP/COO cited added benefits to the slow down. "The new timetable to move patients will coincide nicely with the sale of Columbia in fall," she said. "In addition, moving patients at a time of year when the weather is less of a problem and volumes are lower will be very beneficial."
Columbia St. Mary's broke ground for the $417 million Columbia St. Mary's Hospital Milwaukee in June 2005. The 513-bed, 670,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility is being designed to serve as a national model for safe, efficient, and patient-centered care.