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Construction of New Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital Nears Completion

The $126 million facility is tentatively set to open its doors in July, once patients, equipment and staff have been relocated

The new Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital at 351 S. Patterson Ave. is about 98 percent done, with a grand opening scheduled for this summer.
The new Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital at 351 S. Patterson Ave. is about 98 percent done, with a grand opening scheduled for this summer. (Gina Potthoff / Noozhawk photo)

Construction of the new Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital is nearly complete, and officials hope to open its doors to the public in July.

The two-story, 152,000-square-foot building just south of the present Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital at 351 S. Patterson Ave. is about 98 percent done and could receive its certificate of occupancy in early May, according to Arie Dejong, hospital vice president.

If that timeline holds up, the new hospital could begin hosting open house events in June and serving the public in July after moving patients, equipment and staff out of the original hospital, which was built in 1966 and has been operating throughout construction.

The tentative completion date follows years of delays for the $126 million project, which was initially approved by the Goleta City Council in 2008 to comply with SB 1953, which was passed in 1994 and required hospitals to comply with seismic safety and design standards to withstand major earthquakes.

“There really is a lot done,” Dejong said on a tour of the building last week. “It’s exciting.”

Staff members have been taking tours of the facility the past six months, trying to get their bearings since certain departments were relocated to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital or consolidated.

The new Goleta hospital will have 52 beds with private rooms, compared with the 122 beds in semi-private rooms the current hospital is licensed to serve.

Crews are nearly finished working on the new Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital, including the Emergency Department's exam rooms. (Gina Potthoff / Noozhawk photo)

Dejong expects the new hospital, which is more than doubling the size of the existing Emergency Department with 20 rooms compared with eight now, to serve more than the current 18,500 emergency patients who walk through its doors annually.

In 2014, GVCH served 40,137 patients — 1,626 of whom were admitted, 18,415 in the Emergency Department and 20,096 outpatient visits, according to Maria Zate, a spokeswoman for Cottage Health System

Plans also include expanding both the Surgical Services Department and the Center for Wound Management.

As for fundraising, the Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital Foundation took in $14.3 million during its capital fundraising campaign that ended in 2012, said Tanya Gonzales, the foundation’s development officer.

She said the foundation hopes to raise at least another $1.1 million as part of a new campaign collecting for a healing arts program and the restorative gardens that will be planted where the current facility is once it’s been demolished. A parking lot is also slated for the space.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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