A 127-page report issued by the Inspector General regarding the “new Beaumont Hospital,” otherwise known as the Fort Bliss Hospital Replacement project issued Friday, show $32.1 million in design errors and omissions have resulted in $142 million in impact cost and a three year project completion delay.
The initial hospital was originally intended to be a standalone Women’s, Infants and Pediatric Center when the design process began in May 2009. Eventually, the design scope changed to a full replacement for the existing William Beaumont Army Medical Center.
Construction on the 1.13 million square foot facility began August 19, 2013 and was originally slated for completion in November 2016. Now, almost two years after the scheduled completion date, the Army says they’re still a year away from being fully operational.
The Inspector General’s Report shows that as of March 15, 2018, 978 contract change requests included 132 canceled change requests that occurred during construction. The change requests also included 453 engineering requests including design errors and omissions valued at $165.6 million.
According to the report, the $165.6 million figure was “an estimated amount and that this amount was revised based on negotiations.”
Three line items associated with the budget overage include $32.1 million in “legacy” issues for design errors and omissions that occurred prior to May 2016. One of the major issues associated with this change is related to costs and time associated with the Government’s direction that structural steel beams and columns be refabricated to correct errors in the design of the structure.
The design change resulted in the contractor ceasing delivery of steel to the site, significantly delaying steel erection activities and forcing the contractor to place new orders and placing the project on hold until the refabricated steel was delivered to the site.
The largest amount of overages associated with the project are an estimated $142 million for impact costs associated with the time delay for the overall completion of the project. A listed example included 306 calendar days to the contract which included 126 calendar days due to change delays. The delays related to interior framing issues, seismic test issues and additional commissioning according to the report.
In addition to the design errors, the project was also halted for a one month period in February 2015 after a contractor fell from the construction site, resulting in his death. An investigation was launched regarding project activity hazard analysis and an Army Regulation 15-6 investigation into ‘whistleblower’ allegations of safety, quality control and quality assurance issues.
An additional $3.7 million in design errors and omissions have been reported after May 2016. The identified scope of this overage included the need to correct lighting fixtures and problems with the ceiling.
The report lists three separate optimal dates for completion of the project ranging from June 29, 2018 for the contractual construction completion date to a final fully operational date of September 2020.