Despite delays, Dell Medical School on track for completion

Matthew Adams

Despite the massive flooding in May, the Dell Medical School’s construction prospects have not been hindered, and the project may even finish early, according to a construction official.

Bob Rawski, director of the Dell Medical School construction, said the buildings are still on time because of "schedule floats," time allotted for construction delays to plan ahead for setbacks.

Rawski said the project is expected to be completed on time, and he and his team are talking with the contractor about possibly finishing construction ahead of schedule.

Psychology sophomore Aditi Chalise said she is excited about the state-of-the-art technology that is coming to the medical school, but she hopes plans are in place to protect the school against the type of flooding Austin experienced last month.

“Considering Texas does not flood that often, I would usually not be that worried,” Chalise said. “In light of recent events, I hope they would plan for that sort of event because it can cause a lot of destruction, and it would be a shame if resources and people were put in danger because of a lack of planning.”

Rawski said there are both uniform and location-specific policies in place to protect the school from possible flood damage.

“Our Board of Regents requires that the finished floor elevation of all buildings be a minimum level of one foot above the 100-year floodplain,” Rawski said. “Two of the projects — the research building and the medical offices and parking garage — are adjacent to Waller Creek. We went through a detailed analysis to determine the floor elevations were out of the flood plains.”