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We are writing to provide you with the latest information about our hospital addition construction project.

Activities for the Week of April 21
Drilling and installation of 80- to 85-foot steel piles will continue at the construction site along the west side of the site at the existing walls of the hospital. This week, we will be hauling out soil from the excavation, increasing truck traffic in and out of the site during normal construction hours. We expect drilling activity to last into May. The drilling is far enough ahead so excavation work has started and will last into August. Along with the excavation activity, wood lagging and tie-back anchors will be installed between the steel piles to ensure stability of the soil-retention system.

We have completed the installation of the large electrical vault immediately in front of the John Winthrop Apartments. This week, we will continue work to set another vault on Spring, within the area that is presently closed. Once the Spring Street vault is in place, we will return to Seneca Street to connect utilities under the street from Seneca and Boren Avenue to the new vault, then further west approximately 80 feet to an existing vault.

Work continues on the existing hospital buildings to reroute exiting and prepare the structures for constructing a new building within inches.

Weekend Work
No work is planned for the weekend of April 19 and 20.

Sidewalk and Street Closures for the Week of April 21

  • Spring Street - The street and the south sidewalks on Spring between Boren and Terry avenues will be closed this week. To provide pedestrian access along this section of Spring at all times, a delineated pedestrian path has been created and marked with orange construction barrels, construction tape and arrows. To ensure pedestrian safety during the construction workday, a traffic control person has been stationed along Spring to guide pedestrians along the delineated path. During the day the vault is installed, the pedestrian path from Boren to Terry Avenue will be altered and delineated to run through the interior parking lots with traffic control personnel directing pedestrians. The vault will be installed in one day between Tuesday and Friday.

  • Boren Avenue - This week, the westward southbound lane on Boren between Spring and Seneca will be closed during normal construction hours and will be open after construction hours. The sidewalk will be closed 24 hours a day.

  • Seneca Street - For the time being, the south sidewalk on Seneca between Boren and Terry will be closed. The sidewalk on the north side of Seneca has been re-established and will be available this week. When workers return to connect the Seneca vault to the utility lines under the street, the sidewalk will remain open. Building access for Winthrop residents will be maintained at all times.

    The first four parking stalls immediately west of Boren on both sides of Seneca will continue to be closed to parking. One lane of traffic may be closed intermittently during this work, but the other will remain open to route bus and car traffic onto Boren. Additional parking spaces along the north, westbound lane of Seneca may need to be closed, including a Zone 21 Permit Parking Load/Unload area, to ensure the safety of the public and workers on the site.

Crane Safety
We wanted to provide you with information about the crane safety measures that will be taken at our construction site. In August or September, we plan to erect a 240-foot construction crane at the site, which will be installed at full height and anchored within a very large and secure concrete slab. By installing the crane at full height from the beginning, it will not be "jumped" - or jacked up to raise its height - later on. Use of the jumping technique was a factor in crane accidents that were featured recently in the news.

The crane will be placed near the center of the site in a north-south configuration and approximately 15 feet from the existing hospital. The base will be 65 feet below Boren; the top of the crane will clear all surrounding buildings.

Virginia Mason is adamant about requiring the highest crane safety standards be enforced. General contractor Skanska will maintain a comprehensive safety management system that meets or exceeds existing guidelines for the site. Skanska ensures the stability and soundness of all its cranes by adhering to strict industry standards and engineering in setting up the cranes. Skanska has regular monthly inspections conducted by independent third-party crane specialists. It hires all of its crane operators from the operators union, which requires them to pass the OSHA-approved crane operators course. Further, Skanska evaluates site subcontractors' safety programs to ensure they are up to standard.

Once again, we thank you for your patience throughout this period and apologize for any inconvenience these activities may cause. As updated information becomes available, we will be sure to share it with you.

For more information about the addition, including an animated video showing the new building's orientation on the site, please visit:

If you have any questions, comments or concerns about the construction activities, please contact:

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