For Immediate Release - August 13, 2010

PATRICK-MURRAY ADMINISTRATION JOINS BUILDING AND TRADES WORKERS FOR "TOPPING OFF" CEREMONY

Placing final steel beam marks major milestone for construction at new Department of Mental Health hospital

WORCESTER - Friday, August 13, 2010 - Governor Deval L. Patrick and Lieutenant Governor Timothy P. Murray today joined several hundred building and trades workers to place the final steel beam on the new Department of Mental Health (DMH) psychiatric hospital on the grounds of the current Worcester State Hospital. Known as the "topping off," this ceremony marks a major milestone in the construction of the 320-bed state-of-the-art facility, scheduled for completion in early 2012.

The facility, designed as a modern, green complex, will provide a therapeutic environment that will foster recovery and promote opportunities for patients to transition to independent living in the community. Today's "topping off" ceremony will also trigger a dramatic rise in the number of onsite workers over the next year, increasing the current number of 245 construction related employees to between 400 and 450 workers at the peak of the remaining project construction.

"This state-of-the art facility will help foster recovery and rehabilitation for people with mental illness," said Governor Patrick. "Today, we thank the hundreds of construction professionals and supporters of this project for all that they have put into creating this extraordinary facility. The impact of their work will help improve the lives of countless individuals and families for generations." 

"We are in the midst of a major construction season, and this project is a great example of an increase in construction jobs that supports our current economy and creates a long term benefit for our residents," said Lieutenant Governor Murray. "Thank you to all of the construction workers for their tireless effort and the Worcester delegation for their continued support of this project that will improve the efficiency of service and help patients who are struggling with mental illness."

This $302 million capital project is being funded by General Obligation bonds provided through the Legislature and authorized by Governor Patrick in 2007. The project has been designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification under the rating system for New Construction and Major Renovations. The new facility's design by Ellenzweig Associates of Cambridge is a national model that fosters recovery and rehabilitation with a 260-bed adult hospital, a 30-bed adolescent inpatient facility and 30 adolescent intensive residential treatment beds.

Managed by the Patrick-Murray Administration's Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM) and under construction by Gilbane, Inc., the project is running under budget in accordance with the signing of a Guaranteed Maximum Price Contract Amendment between DCAM and Gilbane.

"This is a milestone that the Commonwealth has not seen in more than a 100 years," said DMH Commissioner Barbara A. Leadholm. "Credit must go to DCAM and our many partners and hundreds of stakeholders who have invested their time, energy and expertise to ensure that the new DMH hospital is the best in the country for the adults, adolescents and families who every day face the great challenge of mental illness and who rely on us to help them on the road to recovery."

The project is now at approximately 40 percent completion, including sitework, demolition, installation of concrete foundations and floors, waterproofing and the placement of the last structural steel beam. A central element of the remaining construction is a robust Quality Control Program that includes professional testing and inspection of building components. One example of a quality control feature is the construction of the Patient Room Mockup, which was built in the Storehouse Building on the grounds of the Worcester hospital campus to identify design issues and patient safety concerns before the rooms were constructed in the actual hospital. Necessary changes were identified before the construction of the nearly identical 320 patient bedrooms, reducing costly changes during the final construction phase.

"This marks a great occasion. A wonderful piece of revitalization for the city of Worcester and great progress for mental health advocates," said Senator Harriette Chandler.

"I am very pleased to see this project coming along. It is vitally important that the Commonwealth continue to invest in state-of-the-art, current, and comprehensive care for our mentally and developmentally disabled residents. We owe nothing less to this vibrant, yet vulnerable population," said Senator Michael O. Moore.

"I am very pleased that Worcester was chosen for the placement of this long-overdue facility. As a member of the Commission to study the feasibility and citing for the new Department of Mental Health Psychiatric Hospital, it is wonderful to see this project take root in our area. This new, state-of-the-art, hospital will be a great benefit to both employees and patients alike," said Representative John J. Binienda.

"The creation of the Worcester State Hospital is history in the making. The 'topping off ceremony' not only signifies the project's final stages, but also highlights the work that was done to build this state-of-the-art facility. The project has been especially valuable in this economic recession by providing construction jobs, and the project's completion is sure to bolster community health throughout the Central Massachusetts region through its provision of state-of-the-art care for its patients and families who are dealing with mental illness," said Representative James J. O'Day.

"We, the people of the city of Worcester, are grateful to the Patrick-Murray Administration for their support in the construction of the new Department of Mental Health's Psychiatric Hospital at Worcester State Hospital. This new facility will provide world class care to patients from across the Commonwealth and will provide good paying jobs for the citizens of Worcester," said Mayor Joseph C. O'Brien.

Since Worcester State Hospital was first built in 1833 as the nation's first psychiatric hospital, Massachusetts has continued to be a leader in caring for people with mental illness. In recent decades, DMH has shifted its focus to support clients in the community as a result of advances in care and treatment for individuals with mental illness coupled with recognizing the need to partner with consumers to sustain their recovery in less restrictive environments. Inpatient care is a critical component on the continuum of care, and will be applied at the new DMH hospital.

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WORCESTER - Friday, August 13, 2010 - Governor Deval L. Patrick and Lieutenant Governor Timothy P. Murray today joined several hundred building and trades workers to place the final steel beam on the new Department of Mental Health (DMH) psychiatric hospital on the grounds of the current Worcester State Hospital. Known as the "topping off," this ceremony marks a major milestone in the construction of the 320-bed state-of-the-art facility, scheduled for completion in early 2012.

The facility, designed as a modern, green complex, will provide a therapeutic environment that will foster recovery and promote opportunities for patients to transition to independent living in the community. Today's "topping off" ceremony will also trigger a dramatic rise in the number of onsite workers over the next year, increasing the current number of 245 construction related employees to between 400 and 450 workers at the peak of the remaining project construction.

"This state-of-the art facility will help foster recovery and rehabilitation for people with mental illness," said Governor Patrick. "Today, we thank the hundreds of construction professionals and supporters of this project for all that they have put into creating this extraordinary facility. The impact of their work will help improve the lives of countless individuals and families for generations."

"We are in the midst of a major construction season, and this project is a great example of an increase in construction jobs that supports our current economy and creates a long term benefit for our residents," said Lieutenant Governor Murray. "Thank you to all of the construction workers for their tireless effort and the Worcester delegation for their continued support of this project that will improve the efficiency of service and help patients who are struggling with mental illness."

This $302 million capital project is being funded by General Obligation bonds provided through the Legislature and authorized by Governor Patrick in 2007. The project has been designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification under the rating system for New Construction and Major Renovations. The new facility's design by Ellenzweig Associates of Cambridge is a national model that fosters recovery and rehabilitation with a 260-bed adult hospital, a 30-bed adolescent inpatient facility and 30 adolescent intensive residential treatment beds.

Managed by the Patrick-Murray Administration's Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM) and under construction by Gilbane, Inc., the project is running under budget in accordance with the signing of a Guaranteed Maximum Price Contract Amendment between DCAM and Gilbane.

"This is a milestone that the Commonwealth has not seen in more than a 100 years," said DMH Commissioner Barbara A. Leadholm. "Credit must go to DCAM and our many partners and hundreds of stakeholders who have invested their time, energy and expertise to ensure that the new DMH hospital is the best in the country for the adults, adolescents and families who every day face the great challenge of mental illness and who rely on us to help them on the road to recovery."

The project is now at approximately 40 percent completion, including sitework, demolition, installation of concrete foundations and floors, waterproofing and the placement of the last structural steel beam. A central element of the remaining construction is a robust Quality Control Program that includes professional testing and inspection of building components. One example of a quality control feature is the construction of the Patient Room Mockup, which was built in the Storehouse Building on the grounds of the Worcester hospital campus to identify design issues and patient safety concerns before the rooms were constructed in the actual hospital. Necessary changes were identified before the construction of the nearly identical 320 patient bedrooms, reducing costly changes during the final construction phase.

"This marks a great occasion. A wonderful piece of revitalization for the city of Worcester and great progress for mental health advocates," said Senator Harriette Chandler.

"I am very pleased to see this project coming along. It is vitally important that the Commonwealth continue to invest in state-of-the-art, current, and comprehensive care for our mentally and developmentally disabled residents. We owe nothing less to this vibrant, yet vulnerable population," said Senator Michael O. Moore.

"I am very pleased that Worcester was chosen for the placement of this long-overdue facility. As a member of the Commission to study the feasibility and citing for the new Department of Mental Health Psychiatric Hospital, it is wonderful to see this project take root in our area. This new, state-of-the-art, hospital will be a great benefit to both employees and patients alike," said Representative John J. Binienda.

"The creation of the Worcester State Hospital is history in the making. The 'topping off ceremony' not only signifies the project's final stages, but also highlights the work that was done to build this state-of-the-art facility. The project has been especially valuable in this economic recession by providing construction jobs, and the project's completion is sure to bolster community health throughout the Central Massachusetts region through its provision of state-of-the-art care for its patients and families who are dealing with mental illness," said Representative James J. O'Day.

"We, the people of the city of Worcester, are grateful to the Patrick-Murray Administration for their support in the construction of the new Department of Mental Health's Psychiatric Hospital at Worcester State Hospital. This new facility will provide world class care to patients from across the Commonwealth and will provide good paying jobs for the citizens of Worcester," said Mayor Joseph C. O'Brien.

Since Worcester State Hospital was first built in 1833 as the nation's first psychiatric hospital, Massachusetts has continued to be a leader in caring for people with mental illness. In recent decades, DMH has shifted its focus to support clients in the community as a result of advances in care and treatment for individuals with mental illness coupled with recognizing the need to partner with consumers to sustain their recovery in less restrictive environments. Inpatient care is a critical component on the continuum of care, and will be applied at the new DMH hospital.

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