St. Louis VA hospital could get $1B overhaul

St. Louis Veterans Administration Health is planning a $1 billion renovation for its St. Louis-based John Cochran Veterans Hospital, St. Louis Public Radio, an NPR affiliate, reported Aug. 2. 

The plan includes adding 700,000 square feet of new buildings and 142 private inpatient rooms. The hospital's emergency department would also triple in size, and operating space would also expand. 

The hospital would also be improved to better withstand earthquakes, as it resides on Missouri's New Madrid Fault. 

Federal officials have not yet approved the project. 

The administration estimates the renovation will take two decades to complete, and while it did not say a specific project cost, VA officials compared the overhaul to new construction at St. Louis-based NGA headquarters, which totaled $1.7 billion. 

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