FORT IRWIN, Calif.—Cheree Peterson, programs director, U.S. Army Corps Engineers South Pacific Division, and the senior executive project manager for the Fort Irwin Weed Army Hospital replacement construction project, hosted the project’s Senior Executive Review Group quarterly briefing on Dec. 1.
The project is classified as a USACE “mega” project and requires senior level project management. Peterson has been the senior executive for the project since May 2016 and holds the briefings to review the project’s progress.
A ‘mega’ project, is a very large project that has a level of interest or visibility that indicates it deserves the leadership attention.
“These meetings are critical to ensure that not only the ground level partnerships are working, but that we are committed all the way to the top, and that we have clear lines of vertical alignment communication, so that we know the critical milestones, we see the risks ahead of time, and we can proactively solve them at the executive level,” said Peterson.
Peterson also met with the senior project management team headed by Los Angeles District Commander Col. Kirk Gibbs and representatives from the U.S. Army Garrison Fort Irwin, U.S. Army Medical Command, U.S. Army Health Facility Planning Agency, RLF Engineering and Turner Construction Company.
The project is more than 80 percent complete and reached a new construction milestone with the connection of power from the local utilities provider to the project site.
“We have a lot of work going on now,” said Maj. Jeffrey Beeman, the Los Angeles District’s project manager for the hospital. “In the interior of the hospital, we have finishing work which consists of constructing the walls, ceilings, floors and electrical wiring. We have been finishing the construction of the central utilities plant, also known as the CUP, and on the 6th of October we established permanent grid power which allows our contractor, Turner Construction, to begin all of the equipment testing.”
Beeman briefed the project management team and representatives on the current status of construction. In addition to the on-going construction, the project is entering the Commissioning Process Construction Phase. The commissioning phase is a quality assurance process that incorporates both quality assurance steps and quality control steps to insure the facility functions as intended.
“The commissioning process starts in the conceptual design and it aligns the owner’s project requirements and the functional design of the facility as defined by the owner,” said Jim Thornton, a third-party commissioning authority with AECOM, a design and engineering company.
Thornton briefed the group on upcoming commissioning steps that include pre-functional checklist validations and the functional performance testing period requirements. Some of the systems being commissioned include the CUP mechanical systems, fire protection, building automation and electrical systems, and medical and laboratory utilities.
As the project continues, the Health Facility Planning Agency and its subcontractor, BTF Solutions of Dallas, Texas, will begin staging and installing the medical equipment and furnishings needed to operate the hospital.
After the briefing, the group toured the project site and observed crews placing more than 250 cubic yards of concrete in the hospital’s main parking lot.
The construction phase is scheduled to be completed by May 2017 with a ribbon cutting ceremony scheduled for July 2017.