St Joseph’s Hospital Health Center in the US has broken ground on a $220m hospital expansion on the north side of the existing hospital building.

The project – the second phase of the hospital’s expansion – will include a new emergency services building, operating rooms, intensive care unit, private patient rooms and a new data centre.

The emergency services building with 54 beds and a 15-bed clinical observation unit with a five-bed chest pain centre will be constructed first and is expected to open in the summer of 2011.

The emergency services building will include house those working on the emergency psychiatric programme in a space more than two times bigger than its existing quarters.

The expansion will also include construction of a new tower with private patient rooms as well as operating rooms and a larger 38-bed intensive care unit.

St Joseph’s says it plans to finance the project in part with $177m in tax-exempt bonding and the remainder will come from hospital reserves and a capital campaign.

The project is expected to be complete in 2014.

The $45m first phase expansion included construction of a new medical office building, parking garage, new main entrance and lobby.