The first shovelfuls of dirt, symbolizing the beginning of a $90 million expansion at the Specialty Care Center at Victory Lakes in League City, were turned under breezy skies Feb. 26, as more than 150 UTMB employees, health care providers and community partners gathered to kick off the expansion.

Due to the phenomenal growth and success UTMB Health has seen in north Galveston, services are being expanded to meet the growing needs of the community and fill in the gaps to round out UTMB's ability to serve patients' medical needs. 

"For years, UTMB has worked with area health care providers to bring the services of Texas’ first academic medical center to the residents of the rapidly growing Bay Area,'' said UTMB President Dr. David L. Callender. "The Specialty Care Center at Victory Lakes has played a significant role in our efforts to serve the needs of our patients, while fulfilling our important role as an academic health center. This is an exciting step into the future."

The expansion creates 142,000 square feet of additional clinical space, which will include an emergency department and beds to accommodate patients requiring brief overnight stays. The project also includes a central plant facility that will generate electricity, emergency power and hot and chilled water.

"I’m extremely proud that the first phase of our Specialty Care Center, which opened in 2010, has been hugely successful in providing a wide range of much-needed patient services – from outpatient surgery to specialized therapy, sophisticated imaging and more – all under one roof,'' said Dr. Ronald Lindsey, UTMB professor and chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation, who also spoke at the groundbreaking event.

"The advantage of having one-stop medical care provides an enormous service for the community,'' Lindsey said.

The expansion project will enhance UTMB's ability to fulfill a wide range of patient needs, including:

  • Ambulatory surgery and complex diagnostic services that will be expanded to provide 39 inpatient beds for up to 72-hour stays
  • 17 emergency/urgent care treatment rooms
  • Four new highly advanced operating and endoscopy rooms
  • 25,000 square feet of shell space for future development
  • Increased imaging capabilities including an X-ray fluoroscopy facility, ultrasound and CT unit  

The clinical space is expected to be completed in February 2015.