Palo Alto: New Stanford Hospital ‘topped off’

By Jason Green
Daily News Staff Writer

PALO ALTO — Construction of the new Stanford Hospital crossed a major milestone with the “topping off” of the 18,000-ton steel structure this week.

It took just moments for a crane to hoist the final 3,400-pound section into place. Painted white, the 30-foot-long beam was signed by thousands of people ranging from patients to physicians.

“We’re here to relieve human suffering, to make life and health better for each and every patient that comes through our doors, to provide hope to explore, and to put those explorations to use in improving the human condition,” Dr. Lloyd B. Minor, dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine, said during a ceremony Monday in the shadow of the new hospital.

“Stanford Health Care is at the heart of this mission,” he continued, “and this new hospital, which expands and modernizes our entire hospital campus, is its physical embodiment.” The $2 billion project was designed by Rafael ViƱoly Architects and medical planners Lee, Burkhart, Liu Inc. Clark/McCarthy, a joint venture of Clark Construction Group and McCarthy Building Companies Inc., is managing construction, which began about two years ago.

Slated to open in 2018, the new hospital is part of the Stanford University Medical Center renewal project. It will add 824,000 square feet to the existing hospital, modernize and expand existing services, and expand intensive care and emergency services, according to Stanford Health Care.

Burt Hurlburt, vice president of new Stanford Hospital construction at Stanford Health Care, listed some of the features of the new hospital, including a sprawling rooftop garden and a helipad with two elevators leading directly to the first-floor emergency department.

“They’re so big,” Hurlbut said during the ceremony, “I’ve been told they can do surgery right in the elevators.”