Construction is set to begin within coming weeks on a new six-story, 314,000-square-foot facility at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth. The new tower on the hospital’s south side of the campus, an adjacent 16,560-square-foot, two-story utility plant, and renovation of the existing facility will cost $349 million.
Construction is expected to be completed in the next three and a half years, with an additional year of internal renovation. The project will expand the hospital’s emergency department with more and larger exam rooms, upgrade and modernize surgery services, and add a heart center and laboratory facilities. A cardiologist who specializes in treating adults will be brought on to exclusively work in the new Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program. The new physician will see patients who have been diagnosed with a congenital heart defect and who should transition out of pediatric cardiology, but need the advances in diagnostics, imaging, surgical treatment and medications at Cook Children’s.
In addition to the new South Tower, a new, permanent Urgent Care Center will be built on the corner of Rosedale Street and Sixth Avenue. The planning of the modernization project also has room for long-term inpatient growth, with levels five and six of the new building left unfinished for future medical/surgical bed needs. The Cook Children’s Prayer Garden and Walk of Honor, currently located on the South Lawn, will be moved next to the Dodson Specialties Clinic. A large green space will be added after construction of the new Urgent Care Center near Sixth Avenue. The new facility is in response to the emerging needs of a growing population, according to hospital officials.
“Our aim has always been to provide the safest and most modern environment possible for our patients and their families. We feel we owe them our best in keeping with our promise to them – ‘to improve the health of every child in our region,’ ” said Rick Merrill, president and CEO of Cook Children’s. “Technology progresses quickly so we must continue to not only evolve with the times, but try to stay ahead of them.”