The final steel beam on the new Idaho Elks Children’s Pavilion across from St. Luke’s hospital in downtown Boise was set in place Wednesday morning.
The final beam placement marks the end to the frame construction, and a shift in focus to completing exterior and interior finishes, according to St. Luke’s Public Relations Manager Anita Kissee.
The steel beam -- nicknamed “Jenny” -- is 21 feet long and weighs 305 pounds.
In May, hundreds of St. Luke’s employees left their permanent mark on the beam with a sharpie, writing short messages and signing their names. “The project manager didn't intend to have it be the final beam, but says it coincidentally worked out that way. Its final location is at the high roof level, on the west stair tower,” Kissee said.
The four-story, 100,000 square foot Children’s Pavilion will connect directly to Idaho's only Children’s Hospital via a sky bridge. “Not only will it double clinical space for St. Luke’s Children's Hospital, but also improve vital services by uniting most of the area’s pediatric specialists under one roof. That allows for more efficient care -- and greater ease for parents and children with complex medical needs. Instead of multiple stops to various doctors spread out around town, patients will instead be able to see experts in one kid-friendly location in one day.” Kissee explained.
In addition to doctors’ offices, the Children’s Pavilion will include a Family Resource Center that lets mothers and fathers stay connected and get information needed to care for their children, a “Sibling Clubhouse” to keep brothers and sisters entertained during long appointments, and the demonstration kitchen where families can learn to cook for children with special dietary needs, officials said.
The $42 million facility is scheduled to open in summer of 2019, and was built thanks to some $22 million in donations from the community.
After the beam placement, the next big milestones will come quickly. “The large tower crane that’s been in place for more than a year will be demobilized and moved out later this month,” said Kissee. “Also, the steel trellis frames for the sky bridge will be delivered to an empty lot north of the hospital starting Friday, Oct. 19. That's where construction crews will pre-assemble the sky bridge. Once complete, it will be hoisted by cranes, rolled down Avenue B, and set in place over one weekend. That is expected to happen at the end of the year.”