SOUTH HAVEN — With land being cleared for the new Bronson South Haven Hospital, it’s hard to imagine what the $22 million facility will look like when completed.
Area residents will get the opportunity to find out when Bronson hosts a community reception next week. The event will take place from 4-6 p.m., Oct. 3, at Bronson Wellness Center, 950 S. Bailey Ave.
Bronson officials and construction partners will be on hand to discuss the project and will share architectural drawings of the design and layout of the new hospital.
Contractors have spent the past several weeks getting the site prepped for construction of the 52,000-square-foot hospital.
“We’re a month ahead of schedule right now,” said Kirk Richardson, chief operating officer of Bronson South Haven.
Even though contractors are ahead of the curve, Richardson said the two-story hospital will likely be finished by December 2020.
“It (the new hospital) is not only an investment in building better health for our patients, it is an investment in the vitality of our region,” Richardson said. “This state-of-the-art facility will enable Bronson South Haven to contemporize care to meet current health trends, and will help attract new providers and staff to serve our community for decades to come.”
Elzinga & Volkers Inc. of Holland was hired to design and construct the hospital.
The award-winning company is no stranger to building medical facilities.
“Our team of professionals excel in building complex healthcare environments,” said Joe Novakoski, vice president of operations for Elzinga & Volkers.
The new Bronson South Haven hospital will offer the same services the hospital currently offers for acute, emergency, primary and specialty care, according to Richardson, with the exception of the wound care unit.
The wound care unit is expected to be housed in a new building that will be built as part of the overall hospital construction project.
The new hospital will feature eight in-patient beds and 14 beds in the emergency department.
“We will have a larger emergency department,” Richardson said.
The hospital’s exterior design will be similar in appearance to Bronson Wellness Center.
The building will be made of stone porcelain tile and brick and will feature tinted glass windows and metal details. The interior colors will be blue and green to reflect South Haven’s outdoor environment, which includes Lake Michigan, beach grass, sand and trees.
The new hospital, which can be accessed from both Blue Star Highway and Bailey Avenue, will be environmentally friendly, as well. Hospital officials say it is expected to exceed minimum energy code building requirements through use of energy-efficient LED lighting, high performance, low E-coated glass, indoor air quality improvements and building material resource conservation.
Contractors are also using low volatile organic compound materials and materials with high recyclable content.
After the new hospital opens, Bronson plans to tear down the current building at 955 S. Bailey Ave.
“It would have cost $40-$60 million to fix the current facility,” Richardson said. “That’s why it was decided to build a new building.”
Richardson said Bronson officials also considered the age of the current building, which has infrastructure that dates back to the 1940s.