New Construction Will Triple Size of Medical Facility
WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) awarded a $224 million contract to Cullinan Properties, Ltd., for the construction of a new state-of-the-art medical clinic in Austin. The VA clinic will be the largest of its type in the country.
“This new clinic will allow more Veterans to receive the timely, compassionate, high- quality care they have earned and will serve as a model for patient-centered care,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “President Obama is committed to increasing access to Veterans’ benefits and services, and this clinic will help us do that. It is good for Austin and good for Central Texas.”
Thomas C. Smith III, director of the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System, who oversees the Austin Outpatient Clinic, said the new 185,000-square-foot clinic will be three times as large as the existing clinic with almost twice the clinic staff. The clinic is scheduled to open in 2012 off Highway 71 on 35 acres near the intersection of Metropolis and Metlink, commonly called MetCenter. The location is very close to the existing VA outpatient clinic, making access easy for Veterans.
The existing clinic opened in 1990 and was expanded in 1997. In 2008, VA leased 15,000 additional square feet in the Southgate Building to serve the growing number of patients.
Expanded services at the new clinic will include oncology, chemotherapy, cardiac rehabilitation, ear, nose and throat (ENT) services, orthopedic services, minor surgeries, urology and gastroenterology. It will include space for an endoscopy suite, a computerized tomography (CT) scanner and a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine, as well as more space for all the services provided at the current Austin VA location.
The clinic will employ about 315 people, up from the current staff of 182. The Central Texas VA Health Care System serves more than 80,000 Veterans.