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A woman-led CM team manages the expansion and renovation of a woman-focused hospital in Nashville

Healthcare Facilities

A woman-led CM team manages the expansion and renovation of a woman-focused hospital in Nashville

This design-build project includes adding six floors for future growth.

By John Caulfield, Senior Editor | June 27, 2023
Superintendent Kennedy May of JE Dunn is running to expansion of Williamson Medical Center.
JE Dunn's Kennedy May is supervising the expansion and renovation of Williamson Medical Center in Franklin, Tenn. Images: Courtesy of JE Dunn Construction

Williamson Health, a regional healthcare system based in Franklin, Tenn., with 30-plus locations nationwide, has built a reputation for women’s healthcare. This year alone, The Women’s Choice Award for Best Hospitals recognized Williamson Health for its women’s services, comprehensive breast care, mammograms, and obstetrics.

So it is, perhaps, fitting that a woman-led team from the general contractor JE Dunn Construction has been supervising a $200 million, 225,000-sf expansion and renovation of the system’s flagship Williamson Medical Center near Nashville. The project includes 31,932 sf of improvements, a 15-room Emergency Department addition, a six-story addition for patient rooms, and another six stories that are earmarked for future expansion. (The Franklin hospital is in one of the faster-growing counties in the U.S.)

Earlier this month, the hospital officially opened its new state-of-the-art postpartum wing, with 11 beds, and a newborn nursery. The hospital’s OB and NICU are being updated with renovated and expanded labor, delivery, and recovery rooms. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is being moved to its own secure wing.

This design-build project, which is scheduled for completion next year, is designed by ESa. Nashville Machine Service is its mechanical engineer, and Enterprise Solutions its electrical engineer. Once this project is finished, the hospital plans to renovate its existing buildings.


One of the postpartum rooms added to Williamson Medical Center
One of the 11 new postpartum rooms that were added to Williamson Medical Center's facility in Tennessee.

Empathetic communications

Williamson Medical Center is the first start-to-finish construction management project for Kennedy May, a superintendent who has been with JE Dunn for more than six years. On her team is senior project engineer Emily McCaw, a three-year JE Dunn veteran.

May tells BD+C that having a female management team running the build has been beneficial for communicating with the hospital staff, “who were a delight to work with.” The hospital has stayed open during the project, so May has had to coordinate shutdowns for roads, mechanical installations, and night work to install water tie-ins.

JE Dunn’s Healthcare Group is based in Nashville, and has had a relationship with the healthcare system spanning several years. May—whose grandfather was a healthcare superintendent for Hoar Construction—is based in Colorado, where her healthcare assignments have included several renovations for Swedish Medical Center in Englewood.

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