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Posted on April 26, 2019

With the upcoming health insurance split-up between Highmark and UPMC, both Allegheny Health Network and UPMC has taken steps to update their facilities. Our company was happy to contribute our services to the various plumbing, HVAC, and fire protection work at each facility including the Allegheny Health Network East Side Health & Wellness Pavilion, AHN St. Vincent Hospital and UPMC Hamot.

In the winter of 2018, we were awarded the design build for both the plumbing and fire protection work of the East Side Pavilion. Design build is when the owner picks a team that consists of architects, engineers, and each construction trade and they work together from the start of design all the way through the construction phase.

Site utility work began for the Pavilion in early Spring 2018. This work consisted of two storm water retention systems, a new sanitary main, and a new fire protection water main that included a bore under Route 20 and a new hot box located on the north side of Route 20. After this addition was constructed, both plumbing and fire protection systems were installed throughout. Due to the fact that there was an existing facility on site, logistics played a key role in expediting the project. While the owner took over the addition in late 2018, our team worked hard to retrofit the existing facility. The project was completed under budget and the grand opening took place on April 10, 2019. The Pavilion will house an urgent care, rehabilitation services, occupational medicine, laboratory service, and specialty care services.

While the new Pavilion was under construction, our office was busy putting together bids for major expansions at the two primary hospitals in Erie, UPMC Hamot and AHN St. Vincent Hospitals. During a span of only a few weeks last spring, we were awarded both the plumbing and fire protection for each of these expansions. This created a healthy backlog of work and lots of excitement.

When we were awarded the St. Vincent Infill project, construction was already under way.  The steel had been erected and the final floor had been poured. Because of this, we had to work quickly to assemble a team for this fast-paced project. Designers and coordinators worked long hours and weekends to get everything up to speed. Our team started plumbing and fire protection rough ins early summer of last year, and it’s currently nearing completion. At this project’s height, our team consisted of fifteen plumbers and sprinkler fitters. Both of our foreman played a key role in making sure everything went off “without a hitch” in the efficient way they handled the BIM, large crew size, fabrication, and fast turnaround times. The new facility will consist of a new emergency room department and four new OR rooms.  Due to the steel/concrete work and new mechanical systems, the OR floor will be capable of expanding to more floors in the future.

 While we were working on the Infill project, we were also engaged in other work throughout the medical campus.  A new cancer center is being constructed on the southwest side along 26th Street in which we are doing the fire protection.  Inside the hospital, our plumbers and sprinkler fitters are busy working on renovations on the 2nd and 3rd floors along with miscellaneous work orders throughout the hospital from staff maintenance requests.

Unlike the work taking place at St. Vincent’s, the work at UPMC Hamot had a little more breathing room when it came to pace. Demolition started last summer on the existing Professional Building to make way for the new expansion project. As previously mentioned, we were awarded the plumbing and fire protection for the new expansion. Construction started this past winter with the installation of the underground plumbing services. With the underground services currently on going, the design and coordination process is in full swing. The over head rough ins are scheduled to start late this year. The new expansion will consist of a new emergency room department, ORs, and floors for future expansion.

Although none of us enjoy visiting hospitals, you will have the peace of mind knowing that some of your colleagues helped install the systems in these buildings. It is also important to remember that our crews are helping shape the future of the health industry in Erie, PA.

Elliot Spaeder


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