Major Changes in Exterior Look of Hospital at Construction Moves Forward

The windows at the front of Texas County Memorial Hospital have been boarded up and “major changes will begin to take place” Wes Murray, chief executive officer at TCMH reported to hospital board members at their monthly meeting on Tuesday.

The South parking lot at TCMH is ready to receive asphalt.  Light poles will go up in the lot this week, and the lot will receive asphalt on Monday.

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The South lot will have 83 parking places, and during the construction process, TCMH Medical Complex patients and hospital staff will primarily utilize the lot.

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The main TCMH front entrance will close on Tuesday and patients and visitors will utilize a temporary front entrance routed through a portion of the hospital’s Mayuga Café.   A glass wall will separate the cafeteria from hospital traffic. 

TCMH construction crews will work with the city of Houston and the Houston Downtown Revitalization group to remove the canopy that is currently located at the hospital’s main entrance.  The canopy will be relocated to the Lone Star Plaza in downtown Houston.

Following removal of the canopy, portions of the hospital’s front parking lot will be fenced off for the 59,000 square foot expansion project that includes a 13-bed emergency room, a radiology suite and a second-floor, 26-bed medical surgical floor.

“This timeline is fluid and flexible based on weather,” Murray explained, “But these changes will happen rapidly as soon as the weather permits.”

Murray noted that TCMH officials and officials from the US Department of Agriculture had their last “official” pre-construction meeting when contracts were handed out to the contractors on November 15th.

“All of our obligations to the USDA and county commissioners have been met,” Murray said.  “We will meet again with the USDA and the Texas County Commission to close on the documents when the project is complete.”

According to the terms of the contract, the expansion and related renovation work inside TCMH will be complete on August 24, 2013. 

“It’s a good feeling to know that date even though it’s a long time from today,” Murray said. 

“As we handed out the contracts to the construction companies last Tuesday, you could sense that everyone’s ready to get started on their part of this project,” Murray said.

Murray explained that TCMH clinic and hospital staff will work with patients and provide maps for navigating the hospital during the expansion construction.

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The temporary front entrance is handicap accessible, but patients and visitors will no longer be able to drive through the entrance when dropping off patients. 

“If a patient needs a wheelchair, the patient can be dropped off at the rear of the hospital—the hospital’s emergency room entrance—where wheelchairs are available,” Murray explained.

Murray noted that all of the parking in the front of the hospital will be reserved for patients and visitors during the expansion construction. 

“There will be 40 parking spaces available in the front parking lot,” Murray said, noting that at peak times the front parking lot may be close to capacity requiring patients or visitors to utilize the South parking lot to access the hospital.

“We ask that everyone be patient during our construction,” Murray said.  “In the end, we will have a net gain of additional parking spaces.”Image

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