Seattle City Council Approves Seattle Children's Hospital Expansion Plans

First phase of new beds expected in 2013


A three-year planning process came to an end today – or, rather, a beginning. The Seattle City Council voted to approve Seattle Children's growth plans, providing the nearly at-capacity 250-bed hospital the ability to add an additional 350 beds in four phases over the next 20 years.

"This is a monumental day for Children's and we thank the City Council for their hard work and dedication to the well-being and health of our region's children," said Dr. Thomas Hansen, CEO at Children's. "We have been operating at high-capacity levels for more than a year and this expansion means that as our region continues to grow, Seattle Children's can adequately grow along with it."

The Council's decision builds upon the recommendations of the Department of Planning and Development and the Citizens Advisory Committee and is in line with the historic agreement reached last month between Children's and Laurelhurst Community Club. Children's opened its Northeast Seattle campus in 1953 and has worked closely with neighbors over the years to minimize the impact of the hospital's growth. Prior to the agreement, Children's revised its Master Plan several times to help mitigate the impact of its future growth on the neighborhood.

Serving the largest landmass of any children's hospital in the country (Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho), Children's had more than 290,000 patient visits and provided more than $96 million in un- and under-compensated care for children whose families lacked the ability to pay last year.

Jobs, Economic Development Highlighted as Children’s Plans for Phase I of its Expansion

Planning to build the first phase of development has begun in earnest and once construction starts in early 2011, it will mean hundreds of jobs for a struggling regional construction industry.

"This is an unprecedented economic climate for the construction trades industry," said King County Labor Council President David Freiboth. "The hundreds of jobs provided by Children's expansion is one of the largest opportunities on the horizon. The expansion of Children's is not just about jobs, however; it's about expanding an institution that saves children's lives in our city and across the state. We're proud to be supporters of this effort and applaud the Council for their commitment to Children's growth plans."

"Children's expansion will create job growth and economic activity, but even more importantly, it ensures the continuation of top-notch care for children in the city of Seattle," said Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce President Phil Bussey. "Seattle City Council should be applauded for ensuring Seattle Children's can grow here in Seattle and within a timeframe that prevents the hospital from further capacity constraints."

To learn more about Seattle Children’s expansion plans, visit: http://masterplan.seattlechildrens.org/mimp_docs.aspx.

About Seattle Children’s

Seattle Children’s Hospital, Foundation and Research Institute together deliver superior patient care, advance new discoveries and treatments through pediatric research, and raise funds to create better futures for patients. Consistently ranked as one of the top 10 children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Seattle Children’s Hospital specializes in meeting the unique physical, emotional and developmental needs of children from infancy through young adulthood. Through the collaboration of physicians in nearly 60 pediatric subspecialties, Seattle Children’s Hospital provides inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, surgical, rehabilitative, behavioral, and emergency and outreach services to families from around the world.

Located in downtown Seattle’s biotech corridor, Seattle Children’s Research Institute is pushing the boundaries of medical research to find cures for pediatric diseases and improve outcomes for children all over the world. Internationally recognized investigators and staff at the research institute are advancing new discoveries in cancer, genetics, immunology, pathology, infectious disease, injury prevention, bioethics and much more.

Seattle Children’s Hospital and Research Foundation and Seattle Children’s Hospital Guild Association work together to gather community support and raise funds for uncompensated care, clinical care and research. The foundation receives nearly 80,000 gifts each year, from lemonade stand proceeds to corporate sponsorships. Seattle Children’s Hospital Guild Association is the largest all-volunteer fundraising network for any hospital in the country, serving as the umbrella organization for 450 groups of people who turn an activity they love into a fundraiser. Support from the foundation and guild association makes it possible for Seattle Children’s care and research teams to improve the health and well-being of all kids.

For more information, visit seattlechildrens.org or follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.