About Prop 1

It’s rare to meet someone who has not had a family member, friend or their own life touched by the caregivers at Harborview Medical Center. Owned by the people of King County and operated by UW Medicine, Harborview is our hospital. Whether serving its mission to care for the most vulnerable, or as the teaching hospital for future doctors, or as the state’s only Level 1 trauma and burn center – Harborview serves us all.

This bond improves patient and caregiver safety, expands behavioral health programs, funds critical seismic upgrades, and reflects Harborview’s commitment to provide care for vulnerable populations.  

Responding to Public Health Emergencies: Harborview is at the center of medical crises, whether a global pandemic, mass casualty event, or natural disaster. As we learn and prepare for the future, it’s essential we increase flexible bed capacity, modernize infection control, expand emergency services, and stabilize existing buildings.

Expanding Behavioral Health Services: The bond expands behavioral health services in a new facility, building on existing expertise and addressing ongoing homelessness and mental health crises. The bond funds respite beds providing a lower cost, effective alternative recovery to hospital stays. These investments will not only serve already vulnerable populations, but help all individuals receive treatment to prevent a crisis.

Creating Jobs When We Need Them Most: This bond creates over 7,700 family wage jobs during construction and supports thousands of frontline caregiver positions in a safe, modern environment tailored to patient care.

Highlights of the measure include:

  • Construction of a new medical tower and renovation of existing space that increases capacity for the hospital to serve more patients in the event of an emergency, disaster, or pandemic and to meet modern infection control and privacy standards;
  • Expansion of the emergency department;
  • Construction of new behavioral health services building to meet the growing demand for behavioral health; and,
  • Critical seismic improvements to the historic Harborview campus ensuring the safety of patients, employees, and visitors.

The elements of the $1.74B bond are outlined as follows:

Medical Tower Building Increase surge capacity; meet infection control and privacy standards; new emergency rooms; disaster preparedness $925M
Behavioral Health Building Expand capacity for behavioral health services and programs $79M
Renovations to Existing Hospital Buildings Expand ITA Court, Gamma Knife renovations; renovate labs, Public Health TB, STD, MEO $178M
Harborview Hall Create space for 150 respite beds including seismic upgrades $108M
Center Tower Seismic upgrades for safety and modify space $248M
Pioneer Square Clinic Seismic upgrades for safety and improve clinic space $20M
East Clinic Demolish building $9M
Site Improvements/ Other Costs Site preparation; plant infrastructure: 1% for Arts; project labor agreement; project management $146M

*Estimated Costs, Subject to Modification

HMC & COVID-19

On any given pre-COVID-day, day up to 50 (12 percent) beds are unusable due to the need for patient isolation procedures; COVID-19 has emphasized the need for Harborview to modernize the infrastructure to support responding to COVID-19 and future infectious diseases. Older buildings on the campus need to be seismically stabilized as a life-safety measure. As the region grows, the medical center must expand to serve the growing population and their complexities.

Ultimately, care will be impacted if voters reject this bond. Today, Harborview is operating at nearly 100% of capacity.

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