In Marin / CONVERSATION
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Will completion of the first phase result in a
larger Marin General Hospital? It will be about
the same square footage, around 350,000
square feet, and the same number of beds, 194,
but the new rooms will almost all be private,
with either a Mount Tam or a garden view.
In 2013, Marin voters approved a $394 million
bond issue to construct an earthquake-safe,
virtually new hospital. However, the entire
project, not including the medical services
building and its parking garage, is estimated to
cost $550 million. Where will the missing $156
million come from? We’ve already started
a “Friends and Family” capital campaign
that to date has raised about $20 million. So
we’re confident personal donors and foundation grants will eventually fill that gap.
Operating as an independent hospital means
having as small a debt load as is possible.
The renderings of MGH 2.0 are very impressive. Considering health care’s constantly
rising costs, possibly too impressive. Will the
new MGH be a “health care palace”? By intention we are not building a health care palace.
However, we are constructing buildings that
will exude confidence, that will be comfortable, healing environments. We are building
to the Kaiser cost model; our square foot cost
is comparable to the new Kaiser hospital in
Oakland. We know this because we are using
the same contractor and we’ve had t wo other
estimates to ensure that our costs are reasonable. We are not wasting money, but we will
give the community a very good hospital.
Who is the architect? It is LBL Architects,
based in Los Angeles. They are also doing
the new $2 billion Stanford hospital. Our
hospital is being designed to be a healing
environment. By that I mean one with access
to nature; one that is quiet; one that, as we
say, “brings the outside inside.” There will be
large solariums in the corners of the buildings for patients and visitors to use.
The new rooms will almost all
be private, with either a Mount
Tam or a garden view.