Santa Clarita Planning commissioners approved Tuesday the Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital expansion project, which would add 200,000 square feet more space but not increase the total number of beds.
Commissioners heard a breakdown of the project:
- Build a second inpatient tower measuring 80 feet high and 115,700 square feet in floor area.
- Construct a new diagnostics and treatment facility that would measure 84,300 square feet in floor area and 60 feet high.
- Add three above-ground stories to an existing parking structure to increase the number of parking spaces by nearly 300.
- Redistribute 92 beds from the existing hospital building into the new tower, keeping the maximum number of beds allowed capped at 368.
- Inclusion of parking reduction measures, including the potential for paid parking.
The project would not add more ambulatory traffic nor additional helicopter traffic, meaning there would be no new noise impacts, according to David Peterson, an associate planner for the city.
Some local carpenters commented Tuesday before commissioners that while they were in support of the expansion project, they want Henry Mayo to contract with a company that will hire people who are trained, are paid a decent wage and receive health benefits.
“I would like to see this Henry Mayo master plan require local hire,” said Alberto Garcia, a local union carpenter. “As we see every morning, citizens in Santa Clarita race down the hill to L.A. for work. Many are carpenters like myself. Local hire would reduce the traffic on the highways. By doing so, I will be able to spend more time with my family and be able to coach in our community sports programs. I should be able to build in my community I live in and make a decent wage with benefits.”
The hospital did not have a direct response to the carpenters’ concerns as “we are still some time away from making decisions on general contractors,” said Henry Mayo Newhall Foundation President Marlee Lauffer, adding that “we do proudly utilize both labor union and nonunion labor in our projects.”
After a unanimous vote by commissioners, the project is now scheduled to come before the Santa Clarita City Council April 13 for the final stamp of approval.