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5/11/15news article

construction crane changes Dayton skyline

drone video captures crane build that will help Dayton Children's reach new heights in the care of children

The Dayton skyline is looking a little different these days. Whether you are driving on I-75 or having lunch at the Racquet Club, you can see the new construction crane that just went up as part of a major building project at Dayton Children’s Hospital. The crane will assemble the new eight-story patient care tower going up in the middle of the Valley Street campus.

The crane soars 200 feet above the hospital and will take the $141 million campus renewal project to new heights over the next 16 months. It took two days and two additional cranes to assemble it inside what was once a courtyard at Dayton Children’s. The arm that will swing steel, concrete, large tools and other building materials into place stretches the length of a football field and can be seen from all over the Miami Valley.

During crane assembly, Danis Construction also used a drone to see the project from a different angle. See the video here. Danis is only the second contractor in the nation to obtain FAA permission to fly over a construction site. The drone pilot knows how to navigate the skies well – he is a marine veteran who flew helicopters.

“It’s a tremendously exciting time,” says Cindy Burger, Dayton Children’s vice president of patient/family experience who led long-range clinical design planning for the project. “We’ve been planning this project for a long time so to see progress begin to move so quickly is truly rewarding.”

Fun facts:

  • The crane maximum lifting capacity is 22,000 pounds – that’s about 6 average-sized cars.
  • The tower crane arrived in 11 semi-trucks – the length of more than 9 blue whales.
  • The assembly crane weighs 450 tons (as much as 57 elephants!) and is the largest vehicle that is legally allowed on the road.

The operator will sit in a cab near the top of the crane, which he accesses by a long climb up a ladder inside the lattice. Once in place, he won’t leave for hours. There's even a microwave and small fridge in there for the operator to have lunch.

Since the crane will be a big part of the hospital for the next year and a half, this week, Dayton Children’s will launch a contest to “name the crane.” People can submit their ideas through the Dayton Children’s Facebook page.

Reaching new heights

The new patient care tower is part of a long-term facilities plan that will create a campus that meets the needs of patients, families and care providers well into the future. These new care spaces will embody Dayton Children’s unique patient care mission and offer places that facilitate the delivery of world-class pediatric care. It will accommodate the latest research findings for cancer care, the infrastructure for delivering state-of-the-art care for critically-ill newborns, individual rooms, better family spaces and improved access to services. The plan was recently featured in a U.S. News & World Report article “Hospitals Redesigning Spaces to Boost Patient Health.”

“This project is about moving forward, reaching new heights and of course transforming care,” says Debbie Feldman, president and CEO of Dayton Children’s Hospital. “This new facility will help us continue to provide an excellent patient experience in the safest environment possible for generations to come.”

A new data center and generator building opened in February to provide faster connectivity in the new patient tower. It will support video needs and new technology such as desktop cameras for video conferencing, allowing employees to connect face-to-face for improved communication. In addition, the long-term goal is to offer patient education – and entertainment – through technology to enhance the patient experience.

“Dayton Children’s is an important asset in our community and region. This project will assure that we are here to deliver the specialized care children in our region deserve now and for generations to come,” says Feldman. “The new space will give our pediatric specialists and care providers the best possible facility to deliver care. It will be a place that can accommodate the ever- changing technology required to deliver tomorrow’s care while reflecting the region’s unique history of innovation.”

For more information, contact:
Stacy Porter
Communications specialist
Phone: 937-641-3666
porters@childrensdayton.org