Copley Health Systems broke ground on July 13, 2009 for Copley Hospital’s new Utility Plant expansion. The 1,500 square foot plant is being built adjacent to the existing utility room on the east side of the hospital. It will be located between the hospital and the Health Center office building, aligned with the existing loading dock. Two new boilers will be housed in the Utility Plant, replacing the hospital’s two 50-year-old boilers.Copley, represented by Optim, Inc., has contracted with construction firm H.P. Cummings and architects Freeman French Freeman for the project. Hospital services and programs will be maintained without interruption during the construction. The new utility plant is expected to be online by the end of the year. Trustees and Foundation Committee members joined Copley Hospital President Mel Patashnick for the ground breaking. “We anticipate increased fuel efficiency from the new boilers with a reduction in plant maintenance cost,” says Copley President Mel Patashnick. “The upgrade also allows flexibility to explore alternative energy options in the future.” Patashnick notes that heating systems for hospitals must always have redundancy to maintain patient safety and meet state and federal codes. “With the new plant, we will be able to run the hospital’s heating system off of one boiler, with the second boiler providing backup,” he said. “If the hospital moves toward alternative energy sources down the road, the boilers would then serve as back up to the alternative energy source. The new Utility Plant is designed to give us flexibility.”During construction, patients and visitors are asked to park in the parking lot across the street from the Health Center Building and the number of patient parking spaces will be increased for this purpose. Two handicapped patient parking spaces will remain available in the parking lot next to the side entrance to the Health Center Building. Hospital employees are asked to park in the gravel lot behind Mansfield Orthopaedics. Once construction is completed, parking spaces will again be available for patients on the east side of the hospital.The new plant will house two new 300 horse power boilers and is built to accommodate boiler maintenance and components replacement. The facility is designed to maintain a visual aesthetic in keeping with the existing buildings and the new stacks are one foot lower than the existing brick chimney. The project also enables Copley to provide water proofing and a drainage system for the south side of the Health Center Building’s foundation walls.The utility plant will cost $1.9 million. Patashnick indicates Copley will pay for the construction from its capital budget.Copley Hospital is Lamoille County’s non-profit community hospital, providing expert quality care with a personal touch. The hospital is an essential health care resource in this rural region and is one of the region’s largest employers. Committed to fostering wellness, Copley sponsors extensive community education opportunities, focusing primarily on diabetes, obesity, heart health, and personal safety. Copley provides nearly one million dollars in charity care annually. In 2008, Copley was named EMS Hospital of the Year.PHOTO CAPTION:Copley Health Systems Trustees, officials and guests broke ground for Copley Hospital’s new Utility Plant expansion on July 13, 2009. Copley, working with owners representative Optim, Inc., contracted with construction firm H.P. Cummings and architects Freeman French Freeman for the project. Standing on the temporary loading dock are: Copley Health Systems Trustee David Yacovone; Copley Health Systems Chief Financial Officer Rassoul Rangaviz; Copley Senior Director of Facilities Carol Ferrante; Copley President Mel Patashnick; Board of Trustee Chair Jan Roy; Freeman French Freeman President Jesse Beck; Trustee Elizabeth Rouse; Trustee Dana Wildes; Copley Hospital Foundation Committee member Polly Manosh; H.P. Cummings Division Manager & President Ben Harrington; Copley Director of Plant Operations Max Paine; Copley Senior Director of Development & Marketing Leah Hollenberger; Optim, Inc. Project Manager John Kause; and Copley Hospital Foundation Committee member Henry King.Source: Copley Hospital.