As you may have heard, a construction deal to finish the stalled Midland Metropolitan Hospital has been signed and work resumed. This is following the government’s approval last October of £350m of public funding to complete the project.
The planned new hospital will provide state-of-the-art clinical facilities and equipment, serving over 600,000 people across Sandwell and Western Birmingham from a single site in Smethwick.
The work has been set back by delays since the collapse of construction giant Carillion back in 2018. The hospital then was around two thirds finished. Balfour Beatty UK Construction Services won the bid for the new contract and work has re-commenced on the site.
The aim now is that the 669-bed facility, which was due to open in October 2018, will be finished and open by July 2022.
The new contract was signed by chairman Richard Samuda and chief executive Toby Lewis of Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, the organisation that will run the new facility, as well as Dean Banks, chief executive of Balfour Beatty UK Construction Services.
Renamed Midland Metropolitan University Hospital, it acknowledges the Trust’s partnership with education providers across the West Midlands and its proposed engagement with research.
The new name was confirmed at a special event held at the construction site, marking the restarting of work. Guests included academic and industry partners, as well as local politicians and patient groups.
Guests were treated to information and films at a number of exhibition stands, as well as a virtual reality experience of the hospital which shows it completed. Information was shared about how it will serve the population in terms of clinical services, regeneration in the area, education, research and development.
Representatives of construction partner Balfour Beatty were on hand to talk about its workforce model including its investment programme in local apprenticeships, and ENGIE UK, which has been awarded the facilities management contract for the hospital, was present to demonstrate its zero carbon energy ambitions.
The super-hospital will likely result in both Sandwell and City hospitals being scaled down, and is set to transform healthcare across the borough and Birmingham. It is vital to the wider regeneration of Smethwick and part of the wider Commonwealth Games development across Birmingham, including Perry Barr.
We’ll keep you posted on any contract opportunities stemming from the new hospital, including ‘meet the buyer’ events.