Fred Rogers once advised, in times of strife, look for the helpers. During 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina, and now in the COVID-19 crisis, among the myriad of helpers you will find Sprung Structures. The Calgary-area company is leading the charge in pandemic response units.
Faced with the urgent need for more medical facilities and emergency shelters in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, health-care providers across North America are turning to Sprung Structures to provide temporary additional medical facilities.
The structure fabricator’s quick-build, temporary medical spaces are providing vital rapid response health-care solutions to three locations in Ontario, an 8,250-square-foot extension at Calgary’s Peter Lougheed Centre, and eight structures in Maryland.
Working closely with another Calgary-based company called Falkbuilt (which outfits structures through digital component construction), the team has been working 24/7 on COVID-19 support.
“We’re getting calls literally from everywhere,” Jim Avery, Vice-President of Sprung Structures told the Calgary Herald. “Everybody is calling, saying, ‘what can you do, how fast can you ship?’ They are looking for everything from drive-through testing facilities to hospital beds to auxiliary waiting rooms, even call centres. The good news is we really want to help and have all kinds of inventory in Calgary,” he said. “We’ve been working closely with Alberta Health Services (AHS) and had a call from B.C. Health and Ontario, just right across the country.”
On the advice of Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ministry of Health has requested all hospitals implement pandemic plans to help increase capacity as cases of COVID-19 continue to grow. Upon that advice, Joseph Brant Hospital set out to build a temporary pandemic response unit to expand the hospital’s bed capacity in preparation for the anticipated surge of COVID-19 patients on March 30.
Within days of announcing the $2-million structure in Burlington, Ontario, pieces began arriving from Sprung’s Calgary facility, and immediately began being put together by BLT Construction and a team of subcontractors. The aluminum structure combined with tensioned membrane panels is an ideal solution for quick-build hospitals. It is based on “swooping” aluminum supports and are wrapped with a thick material. Inside these structures, medical teams are provided with everything from working intensive care units to medical overflow facilities, triage units, isolation zones, and testing facilities. The interior grade medical units are literally constructed in days from pre-manufactured walls systems that literally snap into position within minutes.
In less than two weeks, the unit was in operation, providing 93 addition beds in the pandemic Responce Unit in the hospital’s parking lot. The “tensile membrane structure,” is used to house patients with mild to moderate symptoms of COVID-19 who would otherwise overwhelm hospital resources.
“The pandemic response unit is being built as a critical part of our pandemic response plan to meet the heightened care needs of our community and ultimately save lives,” says Eric Vandewall, President & CEO of Joseph Brant Hospital. “We are doing everything we can to care for the people of Burlington, to prepare for these unprecedented times.”
Sprung’s four generations’ worth of experience with building alternatives make it ready and able to support medical teams fighting COVID-19. With a history of providing temporary strucures Sprung Structures is a steadfast partner for its partners in sectors like industrial, non-industrial, commerical, municipality, and many more; anyone who could use temporary, comfortable, and safe althernative building strucutres. Its global manufacturing and distribution chains equal fast delivery for clients, who can depend on up to 2,000 square foot of new build a day when Sprung Strucures is on site.
Sprung structures are ideal for disaster recovery buildings as they are immediately deployable for many emergency operation applications such as drive-through testing facilities, temporary housing, offices, medical facilities and more. Sprung Structures can be erected within days, are easily dismantled, and are a safe engineered solution for both urban and remote locations, and can be re-purposed and reused.
Helping at Home
Closer to home, Sprung Structures is helping in more ways than one. On April 9th, the team announced a donation of a $235,000 emergency pandemic structure to the Peter Lougheed Centre in Calgary, creating 100 additional care spaces for patients. The temporary expansion will help one of Alberta’s busiest hospitals meet patient needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This donation to AHS and the people of Alberta will significantly expand capacity and, ultimately, help save lives. I would like to extend my heartfelt appreciation to Sprung Structures on behalf of all Albertans,” said Tyler Shandro, Alberta’s Minister of Health.
“When the province needs help in a time of crisis, we want to step up and do our part,” says Tim Sprung, Vice-President, Sprung Structures. “We are honored to be in a position to help.”