THE contractor of the new Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC) fulfilled its promise to Mayor Michael Rama to build four floors in time for the celebration of the City’s 79th Charter Day.
C.E. Padilla Construction showed yesterday the completed structural frame for four floors of the 10-storey hospital, which will replace the building the City had to demolish after the Oct. 15, 2013 earthquake.
“We did not do a wrong thing in awarding the project to them,” said Rama, after the ceremonial concrete pouring for the suspended slabs of the building. That signaled the start of the concreting of the hospital’s floors.
“Meeting the deadline can be done if all are one. Together, we can do what we all have agreed on,” Rama said.
The event, which the City Government described as a “construction milestone,” was attended by C.E. Padilla Construction; the Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW), which oversees work on the project; Dr. Shawn Espina and Architect Miko Espina, who worked on the design of the hospital; some councilors, CCMC personnel, City Hall department heads, and barangay officials, among others.
Engr. Glenn Domanais, operations engineer of C.E. Padilla, considered it a “miracle” that they accomplished what they did in time for Charter Day.
He said they were only targeting to build two floors of the hospital by this month.
While they fast-tracked construction, Domanais assured that the structural integrity of the hospital was not jeopardized.
“Everything is still based on plans,” he said. The contractor earlier said that the new CCMC will be able to withstand a magnitude 9 earthquake.
It was in October last year when the mayor requested C.E. Padilla to speed up construction of the CCMC, whose first phase has a budget of P515 million.
He wanted significant progress when the City celebrates its Charter Day this year, an election year.
C.E. Padilla is building the hospital by block to leave space for the heavy equipment to move around the project site along N. Bacalso Ave.
The 4,000-square-meter area (not 1.2 hectares, as earlier reported) is divided into four blocks. The completed frames of the four-storey building are in the first block, which is the one located near N. Bacalso Ave.
According to Rama, he met several weeks ago with the contractor and DEPW, among others, to make plans so that the Feb. 24 deadline would be met.
Among their agreements was that work on the hospital would proceed 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The contractor, which had deployed around 200 personnel, then implemented three shifts.
They also agreed that the materials for the project as well as the equipment and the supply of pre-mix cement should always be ready.
Next, Domanais said, they will continue building more floors in the first block until they complete 10 levels, while simultaneously working on the adjacent block.
“Many doubted that nothing would stand. Many were talking about issues after issues,” Rama said. “But if you put your faith and heart in it, it will happen. Only doubters will be left behind.”
The mayor also lamented the lack of support from the National Government, saying that somebody, whom he did not name, blocked it.
He said the City has so far received only P50 million from the National Government for medicines, instead of funds for the project, whose total cost is pegged at P1.5 billion.
Despite what happened in the past, Rama said the City should continue to fight for CCMC and make sure that the new hospital will be finished.
“Let us not fail the poor. Let’s address the poor and we can only address the poor if this building will be completed...We will have a globally competitive hospital for the poor and for all,” he said.
Construction of the entire hospital building is expected to be finished by April 2017.