Workers with the final beam placed atop the new building. (Photo by Rachel Cox)
FORT HOOD (May 14, 2013) --- A topping out ceremony Tuesday at the Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center construction site at Fort Hood marked the completion of the hospital's structural phase.
The hospital is about 40% complete and construction officials say it should be finished by 2015.
Several members of the construction crew, leaders at Fort Hood, and members of the communities surrounding the military instillation signed their name on the beam that was placed on top of the structure.
The 1-million-square-foot hospital will replace the current 50-year-old facility on post.
The new medical campus includes a seven-story main building.
Three clinics are being built around the hospital that will be connected.
Three parking garages will also be built on the campus that will provide 5,100 spaces.
The facility will provide 150 beds and will offer an emergency department twice the size of the current one.
Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center Commander Col. Roger Gallup said the new medical campus will focus on offering continued and improved services and programs in behavioral health, new medicine developments, surgical advancements, and pediatric care.
Gallup said the new hospital will basically be an improved replacement of the current hospital which will be converted to a facility devoted to family and community programs on post.
General Superintendent of the project Butch Lollar is with Balfour Beatty McCarthy and said the massive undertaking should be completed in about eighteen months.
Lollar said so far more than 50,000 square yards of concrete and 14,000 tons of rebar have gone into the construction of the new hospital.
Almost 800 workers have helped on the project so far and by its completion close to 1,800 workers will have contributed.