PCL Construction celebrates “topping off” at new long-term care home

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

PCL Construction and local officials held a “topping off” event at the new long-term care home being built beside Lakeridge Health’s Ajax Pickering Hospital, signifying that the highest point of the building has been reached.

“Achieving a topping off milestone in just eight months is an exceptional achievement that would not be possible without the passionate commitment of everyone involved,” said Todd Craigen, President of Eastern Canada, PCL Constructors Canada Inc.

“Thank you to all of our partners and the nearly 310 women and men whose daily commitment to safety, over two shifts per day, has enabled us to reach this milestone during a global pandemic in order to advance safe and healthy homes for seniors in the Durham Region.”

The new facility will be part of a campus of care that will provide access to the specialized and complex care, and better integrate the long-term care home into the broader health care system.

“Today’s topping off moves this home one step closer to completion and Ontario one step closer to delivering 30,000 much-needed long-term care beds over 10 years,” said Minister Phillips. “Located on the same grounds as the Ajax Pickering Hospital, this state-of-the-art long-term care home is expected to be ready to meet its residents in the spring, with 320 new beds for seniors in Durham to call home, near their family and friends.”

The pilot program is part of the government’s $2.68 billion plan to create 30,000 modern, long-term care beds over the next decade. The strategy includes traditional build projects and the sale of surplus provincial lands, enabling new homes to be developed in urban areas where land cost and availability have limited the number of new builds.

“This is an exciting milestone for Lakeridge Health and Durham Region. In addition to promoting the health and safety of seniors with a range of needs and abilities, the new long-term care home will support staff and physicians delivering the highest level of quality care and advance Lakeridge Health’s vision of One System. Best Health,” said Cynthia Davis, President and CEO, Lakeridge Health.

“We are truly grateful for our exceptional partnership with the Ministry of Long-Term Care, Infrastructure Ontario and PCL, as well as the many experts and stakeholders who have shared their knowledge and lived experience to guide us.”

pcl lakeridge signing

Ontario now has 20,161 new and 15,918 redevelopment beds in the development pipeline.

As of February 2021, more than 40,000 people were on the waitlist to access a long-term care bed in Ontario. The average wait time is 147 days for residents currently living in community settings.

“We are privileged to build facilities that have a profound effect upon the lives and health of Ontarians,” said Michael Lindsay, President and CEO, Infrastructure Ontario. “We are proud that, in this case, we were able to create an innovative approach to procurement and construction that allows us to celebrate today’s topping off just one year after the project was first announced. This would not have been possible without the strong partnership we have with our partners at MLTC, Lakeridge Health and PCL.”

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