Though still weakened by the recession, metropolitan Washington’s ailing building market received a double dose of good news recently with word of two impending hospital projects. 

In mid-December, Prince William Health System (PWHS) received the Virginia Health Commissioner’s go-ahead to construct a $94 million, 60-bed hospital on a 38-acre site in Haymarket. 

To be located adjacent to an existing 79,000-sf PWHS-operated health center that currently provides emergency care and specialized medical services, the
new hospital will include four operating rooms; an eight-bed intensive care unit;  labor and delivery suites; an emergency department with 11 treatment rooms; and imaging and laboratory facilities.

PWHS says it has funding in place to begin construction, though no start date has been set. The new hospital is slated to open in 2015. 

Across the Potomac in Montgomery County, the Maryland Health Care Commission is expected to choose in January between two competing proposals to build the state’s first entirely new hospital in nearly two decades. 

Silver Spring-based Holy Cross Hospital’s proposal for a $202 million, 93-bed general acute-care hospital in Germantown recently won the endorsement of Commission chair Marilyn Moon.   

In her memorandum to other commissioners, Moon cited the project’s planned 23-acre location on the Germantown campus of Montgomery College to be better suited for meeting the region’s immediate health care needs than a bid by Adventist HealthCare, Inc., of Rockville to construct a $177 million 86-bed acute-care facility three miles up I-270 in less densely developed Clarksburg. 

Adventist envisions the hospital to be part of a 142-acre medical complex
medical complex that would also include an office building, a skilled-nursing facility, and ample room for expansion.

No construction start date has been given for either facility. Holy Cross anticipated opening the doors of its new hospital in 2012 when the project was first announced more than two years ago.  

Demographics are the drivers for both projects. Haymarket and the surrounding area have absorbed many of the 55,000 people who have moved to Prince William County since 2005.  PWHS esimates that the County to add another 100,000 residents over the next 10 years.  

Montgomery County is Maryland’s most populous jurisdiction with nearly one million residents, and ranks among the nation’s most affluent counties. 

Both areas are also aging, with Montgomery County planners projecting that its count of 64-73 year-olds in 2020 will be double that recorded in 2000.