25/03/2010 - 00:00

Fiona Stanley Hospital a model test

25/03/2010 - 00:00

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MOTORISTS heading south down the Kwinana Freeway would have noticed five cranes looming over a busy construction site. On the corner of Murdoch Drive and South Street, the $1.76 billion Fiona Stanley Hospital (pictured right) is the biggest show in Perth

Fiona Stanley Hospital a model test

MOTORISTS heading south down the Kwinana Freeway would have noticed five cranes looming over a busy construction site. On the corner of Murdoch Drive and South Street, the $1.76 billion Fiona Stanley Hospital (pictured right) is the biggest show in Perth construction at the moment.

But its future hinges on a critical government decision due midway through this year.

The Fiona Stanley Hospital, which is one of six major health infrastructure projects under way or planned in Western Australia, is not only the largest project the state government has ever taken on, but its builders’ contract is also being touted as a future model for managing costs.

The contract for building the hospital operates under two stages – a form of contracting known as an early contractor involvement (ECI) model.

The $220 million contract’s first stage, which was awarded to Brookfield Multiplex in March 2009, will progress the hospital’s design to a point where major subcontracts for the construction works would be tendered.

The tender prices will establish a maximum cost of construction, which would allow the government to appoint a builder for stage two of the contract, expected by September this year.

The ECI model is designed to avoid unbudgeted costs stemming from design variations, and it is expected the method will become more commonplace as the government looks to adopt a flexible approach towards major project delivery.

Perth-based project manager Appian Group has a key role in the Fiona Stanley Hospital development.

Appian has been working on the development since 2005, has a 15-member project team and expects to continue until completion in 2013.

“Our expertise lies in getting the project well defined and well understood before the client launches into awarding major contracts,” Appian director Richard Mickle said.

A second major project, in the planning stage, is the $1 billion plus upgrade of QEII Medical Centre.

Works scheduled to start this year include: stage 2 of the $65 million Comprehensive Cancer Centre; a $71.4 million pathology centre; and a $110 million research facility for the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research.

Future plans include a new children’s hospital, multi-storey car parks, a new mental health unit, and new Telethon Institute for Child Health Research facility.

At Joondalup, work began in November on the $320 million expansion of Joondalup Health Campus.

The state government has committed to spend $230 million on the expansion, with the remaining $90 million provided by the hospital operator, Ramsay Health Care.

Under the redevelopment, 451 public beds and an 85-bed private hospital will be built at the site.

Completion of construction is expected in 2013.

In Midland, a new 300-bed hospital will be built to cater for the rapidly growing population of Perth’s eastern suburbs and Swan Valley region.

Federal and state governments are co-funding the $360 million Midland Health Campus. It will be the first new public hospital in the area for more than 50 years.

Earlier this month, the federal government gave the go-ahead for the private sector to run the new hospital, provided there are no job losses.

The state government had been negotiating with the commonwealth regarding a public-private partnership for the hospital.

Health Minister Kim Hames said there had already been interest from the private sector in the partnership, which could also involve a private wing being built at the hospital.

Construction of the Midland Health Campus is expected to start in 2012 and finish in 2015.

The state government’s Royalties for Regions program has provided a boost to health infrastructure outside the metropolitan area.

Earlier this month the state government began advertising for the provision of non-clinical support services for the $166 million Albany Health Campus, which will replace the current Albany Regional Hospital mid-2013.

Mr Hames said private sector involvement was being sought to provide laundry, cleaning, waste management, safety and grounds keeping services.

Core clinical services will continue to be provided by the Department of Health.

Expressions of interest are under consideration for a contractor to undertake the first phase of development, which would involve review of the current master plan and preparation to design and build the new hospital.

The second phase will be for the detailed design and construction and will go out to tender later this year.

In January, Mr Hames announced Cooper & Oxley Builders had been appointed to work on the first phase of the $55.8 million upgrade to Kalgoorlie Regional Hospital – the construction of a new palliative care addition.

Perth-based NS Projects was appointed project manager, while Peter Hunt and Lyons Architects are the hospital’s designers.

The first stage of the project, partly funded by $15.8 million of state government Royalties for Regions finances, is scheduled for completion by the end of this year.

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