OCEAN BREEZE — The state broke ground on a new $250 million inpatient building to replace several others at the South Beach Psychiatric Center that are currently below the flood zone height requirements.
The 232,000-square-foot, five-story building will replace the center's 47-year-old buildings that flooded during Hurricane Sandy and include flood prevention measures to help it be more resilient in future storms, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.
"Extreme weather is the new normal and New York’s infrastructure and facilities need to be hardened to withstand the severe storms and flooding that Mother Nature is throwing at us more and more," Cuomo said in a statement.
"The Staten Island health campus sustained millions of dollars in damage during Superstorm Sandy, and today's ground breaking begins a new chapter and exemplifies our efforts to build a stronger and more resilient New York for all."
The new building will be 20 feet above sea-level. Workers already moved more than 186,000 tons of soil to the campus to make berms for its foundation and installed new drainage systems around the campus to help remove flood waters during storms.
It will have 250 adult beds and 12 beds for children in separate areas, outdoor porches, communal living spaces, a school, medical and dental clinics and more, Cuomo said.
Site work started in April and the state plans to install more than 800 steel piles for the foundation in October.
Construction is expected to finish in late 2019 or early 2020.