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PASADENA, CA-Southern California-based Tower General Contractors has started work on a $40 million addition to Huntington Hospital, a ground-up construction project that will add an 80,000-square-foot, four-story building to expand the hospital’s emergency department. Tower estimates that the project will take three years to complete.

According to Nato Flores, president of Tower, the company will be constructing the addition to Huntington Hospital with the aid of a three-dimensional building modeling software called BIM, which stands for Building Imaging Modeling. BIM has long been used in the aerospace industry, but its use of is relatively new in the construction industry. Flores explains that the system eliminates potential change orders and saves money by eliminating the need to redo any of the internal systems such as cabling, wiring, plumbing and HVAC after they are installed.

Huntington Hospital, located at 100 W. California Blvd. is already home to the largest emergency department in the San Gabriel Valley, which treats more than 40,000 patients each year, according to the hospital’s web site. In addition, the hospital operates the only trauma center in the region. Huntington is a 636-bed, not-for-profit community hospital that was founded in 1892.

The construction of the new emergency department expansion follows the earlier opening of a new 237,734-square-foot building called the West Tower that includes includes patient beds, a pharmacy, a cafeteria and a laboratory. That project was completed by Newport Beach, CA office of McCarthy Building Cos. Inc. as part of a 20-year program that the hospital has conducted to modernize and expand its facilities.

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