Those driving near Toledo Hospital in the last several months have found it hard to miss: a 270-foot-tall construction crane, traffic diverted, and a great big hole in the ground.
All of them are signs that the hospital's $200 million rebuilding project - what hospital officials call their "Renaissance Project" - is well under way.
In fact, Gary Gordon, senior vice president of Toledo Hospital, said work is several weeks ahead of schedule. Starting this winter, a steel shell will begin going up and if all goes according to plan, the entire project should be completed by December, 2007.
"This is probably the most exciting thing we've been able to do for our community," said Barbara Steele, president of Toledo Hospital.
The first phase of the project included a $30 million rebuildling of the hospital's emergency department, which was completed in 2002.
The work will include building an eight-story, 500,000-square-foot building planned for the southeast corner of the ProMedica-owned hospital campus.
That building will feature 289 adult and pediatric patient rooms to replace existing rooms in the hospital's south side, the oldest part of the structure that will be partially demolished upon completion of the new building. The construction also includes major shifting of entrances and other building changes.
During the rebuilding process, hospital officials said they'll use 2,400 tons of steel. That's enough steel to build 2,272 cars, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute.