As decorated trees began appearing throughout the city, a massive lighted evergreen was ceremoniously hoisted to the top of Erlanger East Hospital following a celebratory feast and milestone event at the growing Gunbarrel Road facility.
The symbolic “Topping Out” ceremony was held on December 4 as hundreds of builders, contractors, subcontractors, and Erlanger East employees gathered to celebrate completion of the first phase of the $50-million expansion project at Erlanger East Hospital.
Following a buffet meal and congratulatory messages from Erlanger and construction officials, builders and Erlanger East employees signed an uppermost steel beam of the hospital’s new 64-bed patient tower. The signed beam and “Topping Out” ceremony represents a longtime custom of ironworkers whenever the skeleton of a building is completed — the signal that a key structure has reached its height.
In his remarks, Erlanger President and CEO, Kevin M. Spiegel, FACHE, told the assembly of construction workers and hospital employees that the “Topping Out” ceremony marked a major milestone at Erlanger East, in which the patient tower construction “came in on time, on budget, and best of all, with no injuries.” Spiegel said he was “looking forward to seeing you again as we celebrate more milestones along the way, including our grand opening a year from this month.”
When completed in December 2016, Erlanger’s new lifestyle campus on Gunbarrel Road will have four new operating rooms, a new Cardiac Cath suite, new lobby, expanded food service operations, one-mile walking trail, and the 64-bed patient tower with accommodations for family members to stay overnight.