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Sharp Health News

Building a hospital the green way

May 31, 2019

Building a hospital the green way
Construction on the new hospital tower at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center is slated to be completed in late 2019. It will be the first new hospital in San Diego’s South Bay in more than 40 years and is Sharp HealthCare’s largest single investment ever made.

Like most new construction projects in an age of environmental awareness, advanced energy-efficient technologies were incorporated into the new tower. It will include high-performance windows that allow for plenty of natural light and reduce energy loss; high-efficiency LED lighting; energy-efficient air and water systems; drought-tolerant landscaping; and more.

However, Sharp’s “green” efforts were not limited to the completed tower. Sustainable building practices were embraced from the beginning of the tower’s construction.

“Sharp HealthCare has a history of conscious stewardship of natural resources, including air and water,” says Matthew Teichner, a senior project manager with Sharp’s Facilities Management and Development department. “We work to save water and energy, while complying with the strict requirements for health care construction.”

New hospital project prioritizes local and global impact
Teichner highlighted many of the eco-friendly measures taken during construction, including:
  • All construction lighting used LED bulbs, cutting lighting energy use by more than 50%.
  • Large trees were carefully transplanted to another area of the campus, and continue to thrive.
  • Construction materials were sourced locally whenever possible.
  • Approximately 90% of members of the construction labor team live in the region.
  • Job site noise and odors were limited through the careful selection of roofing and waterproofing products.
  • The job site was kept clean and orderly with daily cleaning.
  • Surrounding trees and landscape were continuously monitored to ensure protection from damage, and irrigation system operations were carefully maintained.
Teichner also reports that a total of 2,043 tons of material from the tower’s construction site have been salvaged or recycled. This accounts for close to 70% of total project debris.

Reducing waste while supporting international health care efforts
The project team is also working with Sharp’s Global Patient Services program to repurpose old equipment and furniture for use by partners in developing nations. This includes medical and kitchen equipment and furniture from various departments.

“This allows us to give this equipment new life, and helps people who might not otherwise have access to these systems,” says Teichner.

According to Scott Krug, project engineer with Hensel Phelps, the general contractor for the project, the team worked with SDG&E to review and make recommendations based on energy consumption and efficiency.

“We implemented 100% of their recommendations for the project,” says Krug. “We were able to help Sharp take advantage of incentives, reduce operating costs, and increase the comfort and productivity of those who use the hospital, all while conserving natural resources.”

All efforts made during construction of the new tower are aligned with Sharp HealthCare’s All Ways Green initiative to create and implement programs to help reduce waste throughout the organization. The systemwide program focuses on reducing Sharp’s carbon footprint through efforts to reduce waste, strive for energy efficiency, conserve water, provide commuter solutions and support sustainable food practices.

Learn more about the new hospital at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center.

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