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Expansion project is on schedule to add 460,000 SF

"Project for Progress"—DHMC's $224-million expansion and renovation project, undertaken to create new clinical and research space—is about 15% done and moving along on schedule.

By 2006, DHMC should have enough new clinical space to be able to hire more physicians— both specialists and primary-care providers—to keep up with the growing demand. Since the move to the Lebanon campus in 1991, outpatient visits have risen over 70% to more than 400,000 per year. Although the number of physicians has risen 63%, there are still not enough to keep up with demand—and it's been hard to hire more without space for them.

Visible in the foreground is the foundation for DHMC's new 540-space parking garage, while the new floors on the Rubin Building can be seen in the rear.
Photo: Mark Austin-Washburn

"Everybody at the Medical Center is acutely aware of our access issue—we see it as a major problem," says John Butterly, M.D., executive medical director. "We're all excited about the expansion project."

The constant activity and visible evidence of the construction are impossible to miss. The Rubin Building, housing the Norris Cotton Cancer Center, is four stories taller. Construction crews have also been excavating for other new buildings, pouring foundations, and erecting steel structures.

Some crews are already working inside the shells of the new buildings, constructing walls and stairways and installing wires and elevators. And underground, crews are rerouting and installing plumbing and utilities.

When DHMC has full use of the new space, there will be an additional 160,000 square feet for outpatients; 110,000 square feet for surgical, diagnostic, and emergency services; and 90,000 square feet for a connector mall on the complex's east side.

Space: There will be more research space, too. The new floors on the Rubin Building—100,000 square feet—will be mostly for research; that part of the project is expected to be finished by the end of 2003. "Project for Progress" also includes a new hangar for DHMC's medical helicopter; a six-story, 540-space parking garage adjacent to the new outpatient building; and a new surface parking lot for employees— that's already in use.

Laura Stephenson Carter

If you would like to offer any feedback about this article, we would welcome getting your comments at DartMed@Dartmouth.edu.

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