Las Vegas VA Medical Center - North Las Vegas, Nevada
Improving Veterans’ Access to Quality Care
In May 2004, the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) established a program to improve access to and quality of care for veterans throughout the United States. This program, known as CARES (Capital Asset Realignment for Enhanced Services), calls for building new medical centers in Las Vegas, NV, and Orlando, FL, as well as more than 150 new community-based outpatient clinics.
In August 2006, the VA selected Parsons to provide program and construction management (PM/CM) services for the new medical center near Nellis Air Force Base in North Las Vegas at Pecos Road and the Woodbury Beltway. The estimated construction cost for this 150-acre greenfield hospital, known as the Crown Jewel of the VA, is $650 million. Major components of the project include a 790,000-ft2 medical center tower, 120-bed nursing home care unit, 20-bed mental health facility, and a 47,000-ft2 energy center that will house all major infrastructure equipment and system utilities. Each structure varies in height from one to seven stories.
Project’s Complexity Benefits from Multiphase Approach
Because of the large size and complexity of the project, the Las Vegas VA Medical Center is being undertaken in four major phases:
- Phase I – Design-bid-build: construct energy center and site utilities
- Phase II – Design-bid-build: construct foundations for hospital
- Phase III – Design-build: construct 120-bed nursing home care unit
- Phase IV – Design-bid-build: construct main hospital and build out heavy equipment within energy center
Phases I, II, and III of the project are complete. Construction on Phase IV is in progress. In fact, Phase IV, the new inpatient hospital facility, represents the largest construction contract ever awarded by the VA. This new hospital facility will have six floors and a basement, and it will be equipped with the latest technology, telephones, and nurse call, fire alarm, and security systems. In addition, patients will have their own private rooms.
Aerial view of Las Vegas VA Medical Center
Supporting VA CARES
As PM/CM, Parsons provided critical coordination support for design management between Phases III and IV. We were also involved in planning, maintaining the master schedule, and operating in the capacity of owner’s agent. In addition, we worked with an outside consultant to provide an independent construction cost estimate for the medical center.
Parsons’ project management services for the Las Vegas VA Medical Center are virtually identical to the VA’s requirements for the new Orlando VA Medical Center for which Parsons is also serving as PM/CM. Parsons’ services for the Las Vegas VA Medical Center include:
- Review the contractor’s cost breakdown for both proposals and submittals on proposed equipment and materials, maintain accurate and complete job files (including as-built drawings and specifications), identify
progress delays and recommend appropriate
corrective measures to the senior resident engineer toward mitigating those delays, and maintain the progress schedule.
- Assist senior resident engineer in
administering and supervising major construction contracts.
- Conduct and carry out portions of daily inspections of site work, building construction work, document discrepancies, code violations, improper materials or techniques in the application of materials, and substandard or poor quality workmanship.
- Maintain project schedule during construction.
- Monitor schedules on various aspects of ongoing activities to identify and mitigate project slippage, and coordinate phasing portions of the project.
- Plan and coordinate disruptions to utility services, as needed, to keep construction progress on schedule and to minimize disruption to ongoing VA operations.
The project involves site work, outdoor utilities, concrete work, architectural, and engineering:
- The medical center will incorporate an advanced photovoltaic system.
- In the event of a loss of public utilities, the medical center is designed to remain fully operational with full emergency power, reserve water supplies, and wastewater storage capacity for up to 4 days.
- The buildings are steel-framed with phenolic panels/glazed curtain wall and prefinished metal roof systems, and they meet General Services Administration (GSA) blast protection Level 2 requirements.
- The foundation systems are reinforced-concrete grade beams and straight-shaft drilled piers. The wind and seismic lateral load-resisting system consists of masonry shear-wall cores at the stairs, elevators, and lobby.
Parsons works with the VA to provide timely coordination among all stakeholders. We also participated in numerous user reviews of the design documents to ensure that all medical center user requirements were incorporated into the design. Scheduled completion is fall 2011 with operation and occupancy scheduled for mid-2012. During 2011, an administration building will be erected on the southeast corner of the hospital, and the central plant will be expanded to accommodate it. After the Las Vegas VA Medical Center is completed, this new medical center—the VA’s Crown Jewel—will meet the needs of the large and growing U.S. military veteran community in Southern Nevada.