Local civic, business and health care leaders gathered today at Scripps Memorial Hospital Encinitas to celebrate the completion of a new parking structure, which is the first step in a planned $200 million expansion at the nonprofit hospital campus.
The three-story parking structure includes 884 vehicle spaces on five levels (including underground and rooftop) and replaces a flat lot that previously occupied the space. The structure is centrally located on the campus, between the hospital building and surrounding medical office buildings.
Local leaders marked the parking structure opening with a butterfly release ceremony, reflective of the hospital’s ongoing growth to meet the community’s expanding health care needs.
“This new parking structure will provide patients and visitors with convenient access to our hospital and neighboring doctor’s offices,” said Carl Etter, the hospital’s chief executive. “This represents the first new construction on our campus since the early 1990s and reflects our commitment to the community.”
Future expansion plans at Scripps Encinitas call for construction of a two-story, 60,000-square-foot critical care building, which will house 27 emergency department beds on the first floor and 36 private acute care beds on the second floor. Construction on the new emergency department is expected to start as early at 2012.
The Scripps Encinitas emergency department treats approximately 37,000 patients annually in its current 12-bed unit.
Expansion at Scripps Encinitas will be funded through a combination of sources, including philanthropy. Scripps Health Foundation is seeking donors from the community; more information is available at The Campaign for Scripps Encinitas.
Earlier this month, Scripps Encinitas received a $5 million gift to support its expansion from a charitable Rancho Santa Fe family. To date, more than $25 million in philanthropic gifts has been raised for the hospital’s growth plans.
The Scripps Encinitas expansion is part of improvements being made throughout the Scripps Health system. Projects include an expansion of Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla into a comprehensive regional medical campus, with three new hospital towers, including the Scripps Cardiovascular Institute.
Currently under construction are the Conrad Prebys Emergency and Trauma Center at Scripps Mercy Hospital San Diego and the Scripps Proton Therapy Center. Other facility improvements include seismic upgrades and investment in new information technology.