Forty days and counting . . .

taylormoskolart1Today marks 40 days until Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s new west tower lobby opens. We’re absolutely busting with pride and excitement about what this will mean for our patients and our staff. Our average daily patient census recently has been hovering consistently in the high 200s. With our current bed count at 236 that means many families are doubling up during this, our busiest time of year. We’re grateful for their patience, but we really want to give them more. With that said, here is a random list of things about the west tower that we can’t wait to share with our patients, our staff and the community when the front door opens on Monday, March 30.

40 random things about the new west tower expansion:

  1. We will have 100 percent private rooms, which will make absolutely everyone happy.
  2. Our total bed count will be 294 when the West Tower opens.
  3. It will add three new critical care floors and three new acute care floors.
  4. It has two floors of shell space (floors 7 and 8) for future expansion.
  5. Rooms are substantially larger than our current rooms (and by the way, they’re gorgeous).
  6. Patient rooms are organized into three zones: the staff zone, the patient zone and the family zone.
  7. The tower was built on researched principles of design that include safety, flexibility and adaptability.
  8. We will have separate public and private traffic areas and state-of-the-art workspaces to facilitate the best patient care.
  9. We will have family amenities like wireless internet access.
  10. At 12 stories tall, Children’s Hospital now is the tallest building in Wauwatosa and a stunning addition to the skyline.
  11. With a lightbox at the top, it will be visible from the expressway.
  12. Our hospital has come a long way since it began in 1894 in a Victorian house on Brady Street.
  13. The tower was designed with valuable input from families, nurses and physicians.
  14. Every piece of furniture in patient rooms was parent-tested for comfort.
  15. The lobby will offer a new dining area called Café West.
  16. We anticipate serving 750,000 meals in a year in the cafe.
  17. Research shows that natural light plays a role in healing. There will be lots of it everywhere!
  18. About 4,550 gallons of paint have been used in the West Tower to make it colorful and child friendly.
  19. Colors include purple, yellow, red and green.
  20. Light fixtures have giant marbles in them. They’re cool.
  21. The tower is enclosed with a special rubberized vapor barrier that was tested to withstand our extreme Wisconsin weather and to keep the air quality as pure as possible.
  22. Our new lobby will have a 900-gallon saltwater fish tank that will feature bright, colorful sea life for kids. It’s being built and stocked in the next few weeks.
  23. The tower will have separate patient and staff elevators for privacy and less congestion.
  24. Patient care areas will feature wonderful kids’ artwork created by local students of all ages to help children feel at home and more connected to the environment. It’s being framed now.
  25. The tower was built with pride by more than 25 companies – many of them local.
  26. The tower will feature an expanded Herma Heart Center that will include 16 clinic exam rooms, seven echo scanning rooms and three exercise/stress labs to take care of infants through adults with congenital heart defects.
  27. Lambeau Field could be covered 27 times over using only the drywall found in the west tower.
  28. The tower originally was planned to break ground in 2010, but as one of the busiest and top rated pediatric medical centers in the country, we needed it sooner!
  29. The tower has 3,900 sprinkler heads.
  30. The quantity of concrete used would build a 4-foot wide sidewalk from Milwaukee to Sheboygan.
  31. The tower will have a new lounge area on the twelfth floor especially for our teen patients.
  32. The tower has a tube system (like you use at the bank) to deliver pharmaceuticals quickly from the new pharmacy to all of the patient floors.
  33. Construction workers have consumed 100,000 cups of coffee while building the west tower.
  34. The new Gift Shop, Chapel and part of The Daniel M. Soref Family Resource Center already are open in the new tower.
  35. The floor of the new lobby has a really cool animal track pattern, globe and other child-friendly designs (but adults love them, too).
  36. The tower has patient play rooms on each floor.
  37. Each acute care room has a private, accessible bathroom with a shower and bathtub.
  38. You can take a really cool virtual tour.
  39. With new enhanced safety features of the new tower, we will provide even better, safer care for children in our community, our region and beyond.
  40. Days until the West Tower lobby opens!

Nancy Korom, MSN, RN, NEA-BC- Nancy Korom, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, vice president and chief nursing officer, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin is designated a Magnet hospital by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.


Forty days and counting . . . — 3 Comments

  1. I really enjoyed reading this blog on the West Tower and especially loved all the trivia included. Can’t wait for the employee open house!

  2. Thanks for the interesting facts. I know we on Center 7 can’t wait for the private rooms too for the whole hospital….its long overdue. Keep the info coming!

  3. Like you, I can hardly wait for the new tower to open! It’s fun to share the information with the families coming in. They are excited when I tell them about the fish tank, the new cafe and the private rooms. (They also love the idea of the short walk from the front doors!)