(Posted March 21, 2017)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Later this week, crews will begin removing trees from the Madison Health campus to make way for relocation of utilities, including sewer and water lines.
The tree removal marks the start of pre-construction work on the hospital’s $25 million expansion and renovation project.
Plans call for taking down 40 trees by March 31, prior to the start of the protected migration period for Indiana bats, an endangered species. Civil engineers advised hospital leaders that tree removal during the migration could be subject to inspections.
Another 22 trees will come down later in the construction process, said Bob Waldeck, the hospital’s vice president of strategy and construction management.
The targeted trees are located between the front of the hospital and Main Street (Route 56), between the Park Avenue Medical Building and Park Avenue, and behind the hospital’s power plant. Among the trees coming down is the large blue spruce the hospital lights for its annual Lights of Love tribute. Parts of the tree are dying, Waldeck said.
In April, crews will tear down three houses the hospital acquired as part of the expansion project, two on Park Avenue and one on Main Street. The work will clear the way for utility lines and a lay-down area for construction equipment and supplies.
The hospital is building a 24,000 square-foot addition that will house a new emergency department, cancer center, and offices for medical specialists. The project also calls for connecting the Park Avenue Medical building to the main hospital; this will include new outpatient and emergency department entrances. Also, a makeover is planned for the obstetrics department.
The goal, Waldeck said, is to have the new power plant installed by Sept. 1 and the 24,000 square-foot addition enclosed by the end of 2017. The entire project is slated to be complete by the end of 2018.