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The future: Guam Regional Medical City

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by Mindy Aguon

Guam - A weeklong conference aimed at designing the island's new private hospital wrapped up today at the Hyatt. The island got a glimpse at the new Guam Regional Medical City, which started off as an idea and now is ever closer to becoming a reality.

If you ever once doubted that there would never be another hospital in Guam, take a look at the future. "We're at a five-story very contemporary looking hospital. 120 beds, it's 20,000 square meters, approximately 200,000 square feet sitting on an 8.5-acre property," detailed Tony Law. He is a program director with DCK Worldwide. The company is a global provider of innovative building solutions specializing in complex projects, including in remote locations. 

Since Monday law along with architects and engineers from the U.S. mainland and the Philippines have been participating in a five-day conference to go over a concept for the new private hospital. "Based on a vision from a local representative, we've now gone into a design which we followed the lead of an architect out of the Philippines with that we bring in the mechanical engineers structural engineers, landscape architects and so on and so forth," he added.

All this week the group has been working with the concept design and going over every technical detail for the new hospital such as zoning constraints, permitting, building codes and the list goes on. "Programmatic information - how large should a hospital room be? How much work space do we need for work stations? What's the room size for electrical rooms? So on and so forth. Feeding into landscape requirements, parking requirements we have 8.5 acres that we're dealing with here located in Dededo," Law said.

The new private hospital - or "Guam Regional Medical City" as it's referred to - started out as an idea by the Guam Healthcare and Hospital Development Foundation several years ago. But before the island rings in 2012, we should see the dirt being turned. "If all goes well and permitting and site plan approvals is a big thing we have to get through we are starting at site plan approval we're gathering all the information to submit to GovGuam," said Law. "If all goes well, we do actually hope to break ground this year. At the end of the year, that's what we're planning that's what our schedule does show."

According to Law, it's an aggressive schedule, adding participants from Wisconsin, Hawaii, Seattle and the Philippines may be on their way back home but the real work starts now. "The next stage is to start working on the design we go into a schematic design exercise once we complete the schematic design then we go into design development and once we go into design development we go into construction drawings, so it's just full on design. We're also estimating just to make sure we're being very efficient in the pricing its not an open checkbook project not by any means the clients challenged us to keep the cost in check," he said.

Initial estimates show the new hospital will cost more than $100 million.

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