Construction workers add finishing touches to windows of the new Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center's "A" Wing Sep. 13, 2012 at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas. Wing A will house the Tricare Operations and Patient Administration offices, as well as the family health and cardiology sections. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Corey Hook)
Phase 1 of the new Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center is 95 percent complete, phase two is roughly 60 percent complete, and the third phase currently 24 percent complete. (U.S. Air Force photo/Harold China)
In 2011, plans for the new Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center were underway. By midyear, the pharmacy entrance parking lot was cordoned off for construction of the new WHASC. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Kevin Iinuma)
by Staff Sgt. Kevin Iinuma
59th Medical Wing Public Affairs
5/20/2013 - JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas -- With phase one more than 95 percent complete, the future Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center has started to take shape.
"Overall the construction of the new WHASC is progressing well," said Maj. Patrick Ryan, senior health facility division officer for the Air Force Medical Support Agency. "The original design was planned several years ago, and one of our challenges is accommodating changes in the mission while minimizing costs and delays to the work underway."
The new facility will be constructed in three phases and is comprised of four wings, with garden spaces between each wing. A fourth phase is being planned that involves the demolition of the existing facility.
Phase one of the new facility will consist of a new energy plant, a utility vault, a 1,000 car parking structure, and the first wing of the new building, and is expected to be completed in August 2013. Also encompassed in the first phase are the family health, cardiology, and Tricare Operations and Patient Administration sections. These healthcare services will continue to be provided at the existing facility until the new facility is fully furnished.
"The parking garage officially opened for business on April 30, 2013," said Ryan. "Patients and visitors are adjusting to modified campus parking and circulation. Signage is in place to help direct drivers to the parking garage."
There is currently only one road leading to the parking garage, Wilford Hall Loop, which is behind the existing WHASC.
The phase two portion of the construction project, which is approximately 60 percent complete, includes two other wings of the new facility and is expected to be finished in February 2014. The second phase will feature 298,747 square feet of new surgical operating rooms, internal medicine, mental health, ophthalmology, optometry, physical therapy, radiology, lab and pharmacy spaces.
The third phase includes the final remaining wing, and additions to the previously constructed wings with 301,252 square feet that will provide a new primary and specialty care space, medical logistics support center and command and support administrative space. This phase is currently 24 percent complete and construction is expected to be completed in the summer of 2014. Following the completion of construction, furnishing will begin.
Once the three phases are constructed and outfitted, the new Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center will be ready for occupancy. Projected completion is spring or summer 2015.
"Occupancy of the new Wilford Hall will occur well before the demolition of existing facilities. Phase four will be key in tying the new medical campus together with a smaller, but more efficient ambulatory surgical center," said Ryan.
Phase four is the final phase of the transformation, and is projected to begin in fiscal year 2016, which will involve demolishing the existing WHASC and feature surface parking, a legacy plaza and a wellness park. This phase will also explore additional space concepts to support new and growing missions.
Occupancy of the new, state-of-the-art medical facility is projected for 2015. The new WHASC will be the largest outpatient ambulatory surgical center in the Defense Department.