BYLINE SPRING 2022
Houston Methodist Hospital, Walter Tower Level 12 Buildout
Projects in Progress
Texas Children’s Hospital, Main Street Bridge Glenwood Cemetery, Welcome and Administrative Center
St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Gethsemane Community Center
Project Profile Houston Methodist Hospital, Walter Tower Level 12 Buildout / Houston, Texas
Houston Methodist Walter Tower Level 12 was the last major buildout of shell space remaining within the 22-story tower, which opened to patients in 2018. At 40,750 SF, the buildout of the shell space consisted of 36 ICU patient rooms, including four isolation rooms; three nurse stations; a staff lounge and locker room; a family lounge; and associated clean supply, medication, and equipment storage rooms. The floor was built out to the more stringent designation of a Universal Care Floor as the end user for the unit had not been finalized at the start of the project. Houston Methodist had several possible end users for the completed buildout, which meant the finishes and functionality of the space had to accommodate the needs of each potential group. It was decided halfway through the project that the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) would occupy the floor upon project completion. The project was located between Level 11, a Neurological ICU, and Level 14, a Bone Marrow Transplant Unit. Due to the ongoing operations on the floors and high sensitivity levels of the patients, both floors had to remain operational throughout the project. Disruption of any kind could compromise care operations, damage medical equipment, and threaten the patients’ well-being. Per the request of doctors on Levels 11 and 14, no work could be performed prior to 7:30 am so that they could complete their morning rounds and patient observation reviews without interruption.
“The Walter Tower Level 12 Build Out was a great opportunity to develop a new relationship between Houston Methodist Hospital and Bellows. Transparent communication and the ability to react to user requests and challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic enabled Bellows to deliver a successful project and provide a much needed intensive care unit for the hospital.”
- Abigail Follmar, AIA Jacobs Project Manager
Bellows Byline | Spring 2022
Project Profile Houston Methodist Hospital (cont’d)
Any project involving intricate MEP systems is likely to encounter a few challenges. One of the most sophisticated challenges on this particular project was anticipating additional needs of the undecided end user. At the start of the project, the intent was to account for potential needs by installing six 1,100-pound rated patient lift systems within the 36 patient room suite. The team expected additional accommodations, however, once the MICU was identified as the new occupant, their specific needs required working around the newly installed MEP system. The MICU needed 12 additional patient lifts in order to cover half of the floor’s scheduled patients. This addition occurred shortly after the team received the inspections from the City to begin installing the ceilings. As with any medical facility, above-ceiling space is at a premium due to the vast amount of mechanical, electrical, plumbing, sprinkler, med gases, pneumatic tube, and numerous types of low voltage cabling. Installing the additional engineered structural supports for the lifts around the freshly installed MEP system was a hurdle, but additional crews worked diligently to reduce the schedule impact and executed this revision concurrently with the remaining buildout scope. A second challenge was the under-floor installation, which included investigative and testing work associated with both the plumbing connections and waterproofing of the patient room bathrooms and shower floors. Each of the 36 rooms plus public bathrooms within the core of the building needed to be accessed from the floor below for a 24-hour testing requirement. Due to the high rate of COVID-19 hospitalizations during this project, access to these occupied spaces for testing purposes was severely limited.
Our superintendent is familiar with these common hospital situations and responded by prioritizing coordination and access to these rooms in order to minimize the impact to patient services. Ultimately, the team worked collectively to develop a new protocol that allowed Bellows to successfully accomplish the 24-hour tests with minimal disruption to the staff and patients. As with most healthcare environments, authorized access to the project can be complicated. Access was routed through a basement to a designated construction elevator. Laydown space was limited so the team strategically coordinated the supply, transportation, and storage of materials and specialized tools throughout the project. All team members adhered to both Bellows Construction’s and Houston Methodist’s strict security and health protocols to protect the patients, staff, visitors, and themselves. This involved multiple security screenings and temperature checks. With a notice to proceed received in late November 2020, the scheduled duration was set at approximately 12 full months and hit substantial completion on December 7, 2021. Within five weeks, the MICU was staffed, trained, and relocated to serve patients on January 13, 2022. We are thrilled to have been able to support Houston Methodist Hospital in furthering their mission of providing the highest quality healthcare to the Houston community and beyond.
Bellows Byline | Spring 2022
Project in Progress Texas Children’s Hospital, Main Street Bridge / Houston, Texas
Rendering provided by CannonDesign
“This expansion plan will not only allow us to increase our delivery volume by about 30%, but will also allow us have more space for specialized clinics and specific programs that will cater to women at every stage of life.” - Dr. Michael Belfort OB/GYN-in-Chief, Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women Professor and Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Baylor College of Medicine
The new Texas Children’s Hospital bridge over Main Street will connect the Bellows-built Pavilion for Women to the former Baylor Clinic, now Texas Children’s Main Tower. The new bridge and walkway will be approximately 7,700 SF and will tie into the existing Pavilion for Women and existing Fannin Tower Bridge.
The bridge construction is part of a larger renovation project that includes rebranding and roof replacement of the Main Tower and Fannin Tower bridge roof replacement. Additionally, the team will complete approximately 130,000 SF of renovations to levels 11 - 15 of the Texas Children’s Main Tower to free up space for more labor and delivery beds in the Pavilion for Women.
Project in Progress Glenwood Cemetery, Welcome and Administrative Center / Houston, Texas
Founded in 1871 as a rural garden cemetery, Glenwood has long been characterized by its picturesque landscape, horticulture, and historic statuary. Glenwood’s parklike atmosphere offers an island of calm in the midst of a vibrant urban setting. While a treasured part of the campus, the existing administrative building’s lack of adequate parking, suboptimal location, inability to expand, and issues within the facility brought the need for a new Welcome and Administrative Center.
Renderings provided by Dillon Kyle Architects
The new 14,394-SF building will be organized around a central lobby and an outdoor terrace which will separate public areas from administrative functions. Opposite the public space, support services will be discreetly contained while still easily accessible for the staff. Beyond the administrative space, the Center will also provide dedicated space with access to Glenwood’s many archival treasures for research and educational purposes. This will result in wider appreciation, study, and impact of Glenwood’s assets. Taking advantage of the site’s unique terrain, the building will be situated on the banks of a small ravine and offer sweeping views across the cemetery. A new assembly space will allow Glenwood to host gatherings and other functions. The Center will address the growing needs of Glenwood as well as preserving and showcasing the historical, architectural, and horticultural assets of the cemetery. This multi-purpose facility will allow Glenwood to better serve families, conduct business, and share all that the cemetery has to offer with our Houston community.
Bellows Byline | Spring 2022
W. S. Bellows Construction Corporation 1906 Afton | Houston, TX 77055 713.680.2132 | 713.680.2614 Visit our new website: www.wsbellows.com
Upcoming Project: St. Luke’s UMC Gethsemane Community Center Rendering provided by Jackson & Ryan Architects
Gulfton and Sharpstown are two of the most diverse neighborhoods in Houston. However, due to years of disinvestment, this largely immigrant neighborhood has become an area of concentrated poverty. Ever since Gethsemane Methodist Church merged with St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in 2009, St. Luke’s has made it their mission for Gethsemane to be an epicenter of hope. The new 54,335-SF Community Center on the Gethsemane Campus will provide operating spaces for partnerships and programs, establish a safe and secure space where children can gather, and help foster a stronger community. The Center will house Legacy Health Care, a client-centered health services clinic; Houston reVision, a ministry dedicated to breaking the cycle of isolation for at-risk youth; the PX Project, a workforce development program; Connect Community, a social services networking organization; and a commercial kitchen. This project is set to begin in Summer 2022.