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Steel frame for massive UB medical school going up

Chris Caya/WBFO News

The build-out of the Buffalo-Niagara Medical Campus is moving full-speed ahead. Crews are busy putting up the new Children's Hospital on High Street and, a few hundred feet away along Main Street, UB's new medical school is going up. The building under construction at Main and High streets is the largest UB has ever constructed. When it is complete, the size of the new eight-story medical school will equal roughly 11 football fields.

Much of the concrete foundation has been poured and the steel frame for the building is now going up. LP Ciminelli Vice President William Mahoney says crews worked through the winter to keep the project on schedule. Mahoney says it is creating many jobs.  

"Right now there's probably about 100 people on site now. There's between 25 and 30 on the second shift. As we continue to layer on more trades, that number is just going to continue to grow. We anticipate approximately 400-500 people at the peak here every day for multiple shifts," Mahoney said Thursday. 

Before becoming dean of UB's School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Dr. Michael Cain lived in St. Louis for 30 years. Cain says it is exciting to witness the change in Buffalo.

"When a community comes together and wants to work together, the synergism that occurs to have something of this magnitude happen is heartwarming. People who want to work together can do great things in which the pie is always bigger than the value of anyone of the piece," said Cain. "This is a different city and a different environment than it was eight-and-a-half years ago in a very, very positive way."  

Cain says locating the medical school downtown will help UB recruit new medical students and staff. He says it will promote team science and team education.

The new medical school will include a Metro Rail station and it will be connected to the Conventus Medical Building, the new Women and Children's Hospital and Buffalo General Hospital. It is expected to open in August of 2017.