Mercy Health Care Campus Expansion

By R. G. Pickard | September 28, 2010

Nabholz Construction Corporation's Oklahoma Division is currently halfway through a two-year project to build a new Patient Tower for Mercy Memorial Health Center in Ardmore. Construction began on the new $60-million Patient Tower in the fall of 2007 with $38 million in funding provided by the Sisters of Mercy and $22.1 million raised by the Mercy Memorial Health Center via donations from local individuals and businesses in the Ardmore area.

When complete, the Patient Tower will contain 158 private rooms, a women's health care center, a new modern intensive care unit, and additional parking. The existing hospital entrance on Fourteenth Avenue NW will be closed, and a new hospital entrance will be constructed on Twelfth Avenue NW. Once complete, the 182,000-square-foot Patient Tower will be a modern, high-tech, completely electronic hospital. It will join the conveniently located 51,500-square-foot, three-story medical office building that was built by the Southern Oklahoma Memorial Foundation next to the existing hospital and is now leased to Mercy Memorial Health Center. The medical office building was completed in 2007.

According to Tommy James, project manager for Nabholz Construction, the new Patient Tower is being built with standard geoped construction on a clay soil base, although Nabholz originally expected to hit sandstone before excavation of the foundation began. It was necessary to undercut the building foundation by 2.5 feet and replace that layer of soil with gravel fill for stabilization. The six-level structure is then supported on approximately 650 geo piers drilled in series and filled with gravel. Each pier averages 30 inches in diameter and is bored to between 12 feet and 15 feet in depth.

The 108-foot-tall Patient Tower will be basic rectangular concrete construction with an exterior consisting largely of decorative stone, brick, and metal panels and inserts, with five levels above ground level as well as an elevated equipment room penthouse at the top level. Construction of Mercy Memorial Health Care's new Patient Tower in Ardmore is expected to be completed in February 2010.