VA's $300M overhaul moves forward

Julie Sherwood
Canandaigua Daily Messenger
Canandaigua VA Medical Center employee Gabriel Devitt stands outside a construction gate at the VA on Wednesday, Nov. 25, where a new outpatient clinic is being built.

CANANDAIGUA -- Veterans can expect to see the opening of a new outpatient clinic at the Canandaigua VA Medical Center in early 2022, on schedule. The pandemic caused a delay in receiving certain materials, said VA Construction Project Manager David Price. Still, work on the  84,200-square-foot, three-story structure is moving forward. 

This is what the new outpatient clinic is expected to look like at the Canandaigua VA.

Visible behind the main building of the campus on Fort Hill Avenue is a giant steel frame for the clinic that will house specialty care and dental services, a radiology department and other outpatient services. 

Construction is seen taking place Nov. 25, behind the main building, for the new outpatient clinic at the Canandaigua VA.

The Canandaigua VA is in the midst of a massive $300 million overhaul to bring its 1930s-built campus up to date. On the project is a team from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Department of Veterans Affairs to create the new outpatient clinic, modern living spaces for veterans and improvements to infrastructure, utilities, parking, walkways and more. 

Work is seen taking place at the Canandaigua VA on Nov. 25, 2020.

A highlight of the new, improved campus will be a community center and eight, single-story cottage-style houses for veterans living at the VA. Each cottage will house 12 veterans and be equipped with private rooms, dining room, living room and kitchen. Accommodations for 96 veterans will meet demand and additional cottages could be added later, according to the plan.

A rendering shows what the outside of the new community living center and its surrounding cottages will look like at the Canandaigua VA.

Site work is underway now where the community center and cottages will be built. A contract awarded Hueber-Breuer Construction and Pike Co. (HBP) Joint Venture, of Rochester, set in motion this final phase of the campus upgrade. Buildings 33 and 34 will be demolished to make space for the cottages and community center, which are expected to open in 2024.

Work is seen taking place Nov. 25, 2020, to prepare for the eventual construction of a new  community living center and cottages at the Canandaigua VA.

Veterans will not be displaced during construction of the new living facilities. The VA plans that veterans will be able to move directly from their current living quarters to the cottages.

A rendering shows what the inside of the new community living center will look like at the Canandaigua VA.

This modern, neighbor-living style gaining ground nationally replaces the institutional, nursing home concept.

Canandaigua VA Construction Project Manager David Price talks about plans for the upgraded VA campus in an interview last year.

Also planned is renovation of Building 9 at the VA, which will house a new domiciliary. The “dom” provides short-term housing for veterans in recovery from substance abuse and in treatment for mental/behavioral health concerns and other challenges.

Building 1, the main building on campus, will also be upgraded with administrative office and other VA operations, while preserving its historic architecture.

Canandaigua VA Medical Center

Price said some items included in the initial project scopes were not affordable based on bids received and budgets. That put renovations to three buildings on campus, Buildings 3, 4, and 5, on hold awaiting funding.

Solar panels seen at the Canandaigua VA are part of upgrades being made to buildings on the campus.
This new chiller plant will provide cooling for the new and upgraded buildings at the Canandaigua VA.