SAN DIEGO – Representatives with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District joined leaders from the Department of Veterans Affairs San Diego Health Care System, VA Office of Construction and Facilities Management, and contractors Nov. 6 to cut the ribbon for a new parking structure at the San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical Center campus.
The seven-level parking structure was completed by Archer Western Federal Joint Venture of San Diego in September and will accommodate about 900 vehicles. This is the first of a four-phase construction contract completed at the campus.
“This is one of three parking garage structures that has been constructed here at the VA campus and also the largest, with more than 900 parking stalls,” said Cynthia Avair, associate medical center director, VA San Diego Health Care System.
Avair said the project began about a year ago, but has been in the planning and design phases for several years.
Col. Andrew Baker, commander of the Corps’ Los Angeles District; Frank Pearson, chief executive officer and executive director of the VA San Diego Health Care System; and Todd Bofinger, director, facilities operations, VA Office of Construction and Facilities Management, joined the construction team to cut the ribbon on the new facility.
“I’m pleased to be here today to be part of the opening of this new parking structure to serve our veterans, warfighters and their families,” Baker said. “This is a very simple structure to have been completed[D1] but a very important one that allows veterans to get the crucial and specialized care that is offered here.”
The remaining phases of the project are the new Spinal Cord Injury/Community Living Center, which is replacing the current building at the San Diego VA Medical Center, and will be a 197,000-square-foot, four-story standalone structure. The current center is one of 25 spinal cord injury facilities at VA centers throughout the U.S. Each center has teams of experienced medical professionals trained to deal with the unique challenges that affect those with spinal cord injuries.
Follow-on projects will facilitate conversion of multi-patient rooms to single beds and enable the existing Spinal Cord Injury unit to support ambulatory care.
The Corps’ team consists of the Los Angeles District, which is leading the effort; the Albuquerque District, which is providing engineering support; the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, Alabama, and its Medical Center of Expertise; and the Program Executive Office at the South Pacific Division, which provides guidance and standardization for Department of Veterans Affairs’ project.
The Corps’ partnership with the VA in the region includes 13 major projects and an investment of more than $4.36 billion in updating and upgrading facilities throughout the Pacific Southwest.
[D1]Can this be fixed; it sounds really weird.