Building Structure

How much steel does it take to improve patient care? At Adventist Medical Center (AMC) in Portland, Oregon, the magic number is 950 tons. That’s enough steel for more than seven Statues of Liberty. It’s also enough structural steel to support AMC’s new Outpatient Pavilion, a $104 million project aimed at increasing access and expanding patient care services.

The team at AMC broke ground on the project in October of 2006, and one year later, they’re still on schedule to open the pavilion in the spring of 2009. When complete, the hospital campus will boast an additional 181,000 square feet as well as 444 new parking spaces, courtesy of a multi-level parking garage. Services will include: an expanded emergency department, additional inpatient operating rooms and a new center for cardiovascular services that will provide a one-stop location for diagnosis and treatment.

“The impetus for this project was really to increase emergency access,” said Tom Russell, AMC senior vice president, who has been working on the project since late 2001.

“Portland emergency departments have been in a difficult situation for a number of years, and we wanted to improve our access and ability to care for patients,” added Russell, indicating that admissions to AMC’s emergency department had increased dramatically in the last decade.

“The whole purpose of this project is to make getting care easier, convenient and more efficient for our patients,” he said.

“This project is the result of considerable effort in planning for the future needs of our community,” said Deryl Jones, hospital president and CEO. “Our goal is to provide improved access for our patients and to create an optimum environment for advanced medical care.”

To learn more about the AMC project and to see live webcam footage of the construction, visit

October 01, 2007 / Feature