The Ronald McDonald House would not have been built without the consideration and care of the construction community throughout San Diego.

Ronald McDonald House

Built on top of an existing six-story parking structure near the Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego, the Ronald McDonald House received contributions from builders, architects and subcontractors who helped construct a 65,000-sq-ft, $12.8-million facility.

The new Ronald McDonald House increases the number of beds for sick children from 12 to 47 and includes a number of new facilities, including laundry rooms, television and snack rooms, child and adolescent game rooms, library and a school classroom.

The project team constructed the building at cost. Salaries were covered, but no profit was made. Through an initiative spearheaded by general contractor Barnhart Inc., nearly 40 subcontractors became aware of the project and its needs. As a result, many cut their fees and volunteered to donate time and materials. The different contributors gave labor, goods and materials that totaled nearly $3 million. The design firm also contributed time and design at a reduced cost.

Barnhart organized a breakfast meeting early in the project stages to enlist potential subcontractors that would contribute to the project. Barnhart also worked to organize three other fundraising events throughout the construction process, including a Topping Out Ceremony, a Ronald McDonald Corporate VIP Tour and a Red Shoe Ball with the project nearly complete.

The project team also developed cost management solutions to save $1.9 million in building costs. Those funds were then used to upgrade the facilities, such as adding refrigerators to the 47 rooms.

Besides funding challenges, the project team had to manage a tight working area on top of the parking garage. Working on top of the garage limited street access and the project...