JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS) — A big milestone has been reached in the effort to improve health care in Jackson County.
6 News was at Henry Ford Allegiance Health in Jackson Wednesday for a special topping out ceremony.
As a white beam with an American flag and small tree attached flew through the air and was locked into place, a major addition to Allegiance Health was one step closer to completion.
“It’s an exciting day today to be able to put this ceremonial piece of steel up,” said Senior Project Manager Craig Smith of the Christman Company, who’s leading the construction effort.
The special topping out ceremony highlighted the progress of a three-story patient tower.
“What we’re doing is adding 66 new rooms. That will give us capacity to make all rooms private rooms,” said Henry Ford Allegiance Health CEO Georgia Fojtasek.
Fojtasek says the goal is create a more comfortable environment for patients and their families.
“We’re trying to work to create a real healing environment,” Fojtasek said.
The Allegiance campus is going through a big transformation as a $55 million dollar investment is made on two projects.
Near the patient tower addition, the Innovation and Education Center is going up.
The facility will provide state of the art training for medical staff, students and local first responders.
Fojtasek says a big investment like this benefits the entire community.
“As we expand, we need to have a vision for a regional health system that can truly add to the economy. Hopefully part of this construction makes it very visible the investment we’re willing to make,” Fojtasek said.
With the ceremonial beam in place crews can now pick up the pace.
“The building will start taking shape by the end of this year and then sometime in 2018 they will start treating patients in the facility,” Smith said.
The Innovation and Education Center is expected to be complete by the end of 2017.