Dignataries at the Penticton Regional Hospital where a 55-metre high crane now sits as construction ramps up for the new Patient Care Tower.

Crane in Penticton skyline means hospital progress

A change in Penticton's skyline marks a milestone for the Penticton Regional Hospital.

A change in Penticton’s skyline marks a milestone for the Penticton Regional Hospital.

“It covers the skyline in Penticton and what it is saying is that we are ready to build a tower,” said Maureen Thomson, acute health services director for Interior Health, of the 55-metre crane that now is planted into the construction site at the hospital.

(Related story: Hospital work began in May)

Ground was broken on the site in July and work is well underway for the project. The Patient Care Tower will include new space for outpatient services, 85 in-patient beds in single patient rooms, five operating rooms and space for the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s medical programs. The Patient Care Tower and parkade are expected to be open in 2019.

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The crane that now graces the Penticton skyline is estimated to be 12-feet higher than the highest point that the tower will stand. It will be in its current location for almost a year while work continues on the site. Another crane will be constructed on the site as work on the parkade begins.

“It’s like a chess game here. We have to have parking spots at all times, so we have phased the work,” said Ezio Del Fatt, EllisDon Infrastructure construction manager, who added they are trying to hire as many local labourers as possible to work on the project.