Sutter Announces $158M Expansion To Its Santa Rosa Hospital

Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital announced Friday it will hold a groundbreaking event on Sept. 20 at 11 a.m. to mark the official start of its $158 million expansion project — a 3-story structure that will add dozens of hospital beds, more treatment areas in the emergency room, and additional surgical suites.

Lisa Amador, assistant administrator and director of philanthropy, North Bay Sutter Health, announced the news during the Business Journal’s 20th annual Health Care Conference, held Friday at the Hyatt Regency Sonoma Wine Country in Santa Rosa.

“The expansion is a $158 million project and also will include a $15 million capital campaign for philanthropy for (more) services, innovation programs and technology,” she said, adding that Sutter is taking a two-pronged approach to the expansion.

The first will be a three-story tower on the east side of the hospital, located next to the medical office building. The tower will include 40 additional beds, plus two more operating rooms to be located on the lower floor. The timeline for completion is April 2022.

“It takes a long time,” Amador said. “We’ve been in the planning process for a couple of years as well.”

The second phase of the expansion involves increasing the hospital’s emergency room department.

The work involves renovating the internal part of the building to accommodate an additional nine treatment areas, bringing the total number to 27, she said.

“We’ve been experiencing a lot of demand in the ER department, which is really the reason that we are expanding it,” Amador said, adding that support services will be increased as well. “That part of the project will be completed by Sept. 2022.”

The expansion project will mark the completion of the entire Sutter hospital plan, according Gary Helfrich, a planner with Permit Sonoma.

The current Sutter Hospital, which opened in 2014, completed phase 1 of the 2-phase project, he said.

“This expansion is the completion of phase 2, with some minor changes to the original project. Compared to the original approval, the revised phase 2 actually slightly reduces the final project size by 22,000 square feet, while slightly increasing the number of beds (up to 132 from 127),” Helfrich said. “There is also a small increase in height, and two additional employees (569 versus 567).

Sutter’s recently completed solar project also is part of the expansion, Helfrich said.

The hospital on June 17 officially “flipped the switch” on 4,627 solar modules covering approximately 565 parking spaces, supporting 40% of the main hospital’s electricity, Shaun Ralston, regional manager at Sutter Health, told the Business Journal at the time. The solar panels are expected to generate 2.4 million kilowatt-hours of clean energy annually, which would be equivalent to powering 206 homes in one year, according to Sutter.