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St. Bernards Hosts Topping Out Ceremony for New Surgical and Intensive Care Tower

Oct 22, 2018
St. Bernards Topping Out Ceremony

Today, St. Bernards hosted the official Topping Out ceremony for the new tower, currently under construction on the health system’s main campus in downtown Jonesboro.

The beam was adorned with well-wishes, prayers and signatures of St. Bernards team members, leaders and community supporters. The beam is the tallest beam to be placed on the project. In construction, the “topping out” of a building is a builder’s rite and a long-standing tradition.

“This is an exciting time for all of us at St. Bernards as we move one step closer to opening this new tower, which will provide us the additional capacity to care for even more patients in Northeast Arkansas and Southeast Missouri,” said Chris Barber, president and CEO of St. Bernards Healthcare.

The 245,000-square-foot tower will feature four stories and will serve as the hub of all surgical and intensive care services for the hospital. When construction is complete in fall 2019, visitors will enter a new front entrance to the campus. The first level will feature a beautiful ground-level atrium with access to a coffee shop and café, education rooms, a community meeting room, a chapel, improved wayfinding, admission services and various support services for surgery and critical care areas.

  • In addition, level one will feature 14 surgical suites, with the ability to expand up to 20. This level will include a hybrid surgical suite, which will be equipped with advanced medical imaging devices that enable minimally-invasive surgery. Level one will also feature a special procedure room to be used for interventional radiology procedures as well as support programs including a pharmacy and a GI Lab.
  • Level two will house a 46-bed critical care unit that can be expanded to 60 units in the future.
  • Level three will allow for future growth and expansion.
  • Level four will be a mechanical area.

The new tower is a $103 million project and is the third phase of St. Bernards Healthcare’s master facility plan, which includes the completed Cancer Center, updates to the Emergency Department and Heartcare Center. Together, all of the projects are a $137.5 million investment.

The project was developed in conjunction with HKS, Inc. and Nabholz Construction is serving as contractor. For the construction of the tower, St. Bernards is sourcing as many local products as possible. For example, steel for the project - including the Topping Out beam - is from Nucor in Blytheville. For more information, please visit