University Health Women’s & Children’s Hospital

Project Spotlight
San Antonio, Texas

With contributions from six of our offices, JE Dunn recently completed its largest healthcare project: University Health’s new Women’s & Children’s Hospital in San Antonio, Texas. This innovative, family-centered project strongly aligns with JE Dunn’s commitment to building inspired places.

“I am most proud of the project team. The company’s commitment to the largest ever healthcare project is reflected in six different JE Dunn offices. Along with our local JV partner, Joeris, the group quickly gelled into a cohesive unit.” – Project Executive Mike Cloud

Given the project’s complexity and scale, along with its tight, urban site on a busy hospital campus, clear communication and steadfast collaboration with the client, partners, and other JE Dunn offices were imperative.

Communication and Collaboration
Working on an active hospital campus with patients, staff and visitors, JE Dunn demonstrated deep healthcare knowledge and expertise, along with impeccable planning and communication. The team prioritized patient and staff safety and comfort throughout each phase of the project, while also getting the job done.

The team faced many challenges over the course of four years, such as COVID-19 restrictions, public financing mandates, cost escalation, supply chain delays, and skilled labor shortages. With commitment and persistence, JE Dunn garnered University Health’s trust through an ability to keep all moving parts working, despite changes and challenges.

Project Executive Mike Cloud reflected that, “The team became a family during this project through engagements, marriages, babies, health challenges, marathon training, softball leagues, happy hours, paintball, and college football.”

In every aspect, this project reflected JE Dunn’s values and promises, our ability to collaborate, partner and innovate, and our commitment to push the envelope, persevere and deliver. As employee-owners, we can all be proud of what this team accomplished on this highly impactful project for the San Antonio community.

Congratulations to University Health’s Women’s and Children’s Hospital team!

All In The Details

The $573.7 million project includes a new 1.1 million-square-foot, 14-story, 300-bed hospital for women, babies, and children (an addition to the existing University Health campus); a new 900-space parking structure, additional shell space for future growth and 50,000 square feet of renovation of the interventional cardiology suite.
The Women’s and Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in South Texas to exclusively focus on the unique needs of women and children, and is also the state’s first Level IV maternal center, providing the highest level of care.
The project is a remarkable example of maximizing prefabrication in a U.S. hospital. Embracing prefabrication early in design shifted approximately 300,000 hours of trade labor – and the accompanying potential for noise, safety risks and traffic – away from the busy medical district, while also maintaining the architects’ ambitious design intent.
Seventy-five percent of the subcontracts were awarded to locally owned businesses and over 35 percent were awarded to small, woman and minority-owned business enteprises.
At its peak, there were 900 people working on the project site. For months there would be 24/7 hoisting, meaning people were constantly working underneath moving machinery and the tower crane. Safety training communication, and qualification to perform the work were all top priority. The details of daily work, machinery used, schedule impact, and risk management were built into trade partner work plans and reiterated in weekly meetings and daily huddles. At the end of the project there will be more than 4 million hours of labor invested in building the hospital.
Prefabrication planning included several variables: teams located across the country, multiple joint venture agreements, and planning during the pandemic. Overall, the amount of prefab done was impressive and innovative. It evolved even past the design phase to incorporate more prefab opportunities, with 516 exterior panels, 1,439 unitized curtainwall panels, 251 bathroom pods, 194 headwalls, 200 multi-trade racks, 14 modular electrical rooms, 251 sanitary piping trees.