Time flies when you’re Building on the Promise (Time-lapse Video)

While they didn’t move quite as fast as it seems in this video, the workers who built the Kay Jewelers Pavilion helped ensure the project was completed months ahead of schedule, and well under the projected $180 million budget. There is also an extended version of this video.

Community open house set for April 26 to celebrate opening of Kay Jewelers Pavilion

Kay Jewelers PavilionHere’s your first chance to step inside Akron’s newest gem and celebrate our community’s most precious jewels – kids.

Patient families, friends and the general public are invited to take their first look inside Akron Children’s Hospital’s new $180 million Kay Jewelers Pavilion at a community open house from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, April 26.

The open house will include:

  • guided tours of our new ER, NICU, GOJO Outpatient Surgery Center and special delivery unit for high-risk newborns
  • kids’ games and activities, including life-size versions of popular board games and a photo booth
  • entertainment, including performances by local kids, puppeteers, costumed characters and a bubble artist
  • Doggie Brigade volunteers

Attendees will also have an opportunity to draw pictures that will become part of a permanent, public artwork at the hospital.

A Look Inside

Kay Jewelers Pavilion lobby

Kay Jewelers Pavilion lobby

The interior of Kay Jewelers Pavilion features a “backyard” theme echoing the joys of childhood and the idea that Akron Children’s has been a treasure in greater Akron’s own backyard since 1890.

“Akron Children’s was founded 125 years ago this year as a day nursery and has grown into a regional health system with the depth and breadth of clinical services that truly enable us to serve all of the children who need us,” said Bill Considine, president and chief executive officer of Akron Children’s. “Every detail of Kay Jewelers Pavilion has been carefully planned with our patient families in mind – and we are thrilled to finally open our doors and invite everyone to see this exciting investment into our children’s well being.”

In following the backyard theme, our new NICU is “The Treehouse” – a soothing, healing environment where families can be comfortable while neonatologists and specially trained nurses care for the youngest and most fragile of infants.

In keeping with the backyard theme of the Kay Jewelers Pavilion, our new ER has a puddle theme

In keeping with the backyard theme of the Kay Jewelers Pavilion, our new ER has a puddle theme

Our ER, nicknamed “The Puddle,” was especially designed to facilitate a more natural flow of admissions.

The GOJO Outpatient Surgery Center, “The Sandbox,” will open with 4 operating rooms equipped for a variety of outpatient procedures, including ENT, ophthalmology, urology, dental and some plastic surgery cases.

Our new labor, delivery and recovery center, known as “The Garden,” is designed for cases when a baby is considered at high risk and in need of pediatric specialists the moment they are born.

A gem of a gift


Ed Hrabak, president of Sterling Jewelers, looks at the building as the banner announcing the Kay Jewelers Pavilion is unveiled before the gathered guests.

On Oct. 24, Akron Children’s Hospital announced the name of its new medical building on the Akron campus: the Kay Jewelers Pavilion.

The new building was named in recognition of Kay® Jewelers continued support and recent $10 million gift toward the “Building on the Promise” capital campaign. The gift is the largest in Akron Children’s history.

Kay® Jewelers is operated by Akron, Ohio-based Sterling Jewelers, a Division of Signet Jewelers Ltd., the largest specialty retail jeweler in the U.S., U.K. and Canada.


More than 80 guests attended the celebration, which was highlighted by the official announcement of the building name and remarks from leadership at both organizations, including Sterling Jewelers President Ed Hrabak and Akron Children’s President and CEO Bill Considine.

“I’m so proud that Sterling Jewelers is supporting Akron Children’s,” said Hrabak. “Together, we will continue to make a difference for our children and the children in our community.”

“Sterling’s generosity is an example of how local businesses can support the hospital, which enables us to continue serving the patients here in our own backyard,” said Considine .


During the event, Hannah Seigfried, a Sterling Jewelers team member, shared the story of her family’s experience at Akron Children’s – where her daughter, Sariah, born prematurely at 29 weeks, was treated.

Joined by her now 9-month old daughter, Hannah recounted how the family benefited from the care and compassion that they found at Akron Children’s during Sariah’s 87-day stay.

“We’ve have definitely had a few bumps in the road, but I feel very blessed for having Akron Children’s Hospital,” said Seigfried. “I have a very healthy, almost 9-month-old thanks to this hospital.”

Since 2012, the $60 million “Building on the Promise” capital campaign has helped to finance a major expansion of the hospital’s Akron campus. Akron Children’s officially broke ground on the new medical building in May 2013.


Hannah Seigfried, with her ten-month-old daughter Sariah Boyer, was among the Sterling Jewelers employees who attended the event.

When it opens in May 2015, it will house a NICU, emergency department, outpatient surgery center, and labor and delivery unit for high-risk newborns. This initiative has also supported the renovation and expansion of the Ronald McDonald House of Akron. In addition to Kay Jewelers Pavilion, the new café in the building will also be called the Kay Kafé.

“This wonderful gift is a true testament and reflective of the outstanding corporate citizen Sterling is in this community,” said Philip Maynard, chairman of the “Building on the Promise” capital campaign. “They and their many team members personify the meaning of giving back to the community, where they live and work, by giving of their time, their talent and their treasure. Children’s has certainly benefited immeasurably from our partnership and collaboration with Sterling, and I’m certain our journey together will continue for many years to come.”

Doing their part, by hanging hearts

Heart is suspended from one of the tower cranesAfter suspending a Christmas tree from a tower crane, and donating gifts to Akron Children’s patients during the holidays, Marge Zezulewicz, project architect manager for the new building under construction on the Akron campus, asked herself, “What’s next?”

“We’re familiar with a lot of the fundraising campaigns at the hospital because we’re local,” said Zezelewicz. “So as soon as the Christmas donation was done, I thought, radiothon’s next.”

This is why Welty-Boldt are Change Bandits for the Have a Heart, Do Your Part radiothon.

The construction office is adorned with radiothon posters and Change Bandit buckets, but that’s not the only way the team is getting involved.

2014-radiothon-logo“Some crew members took their scrap metal pieces to a recycle center,” said Zezelewicz. “The money they got from the recycle center will now be a part of the Change Bandit contribution.”

And the involvement doesn’t stop there.

“In thinking about what comes next, I thought it would be a great idea to suspend a heart from the cranes, like we did with the Christmas tree,” said Zezelewicz. “We chose to hang a heart to support American Heart Month, because Valentine’s Day is in February, and to show our support for the Have a Heart, Do Your Part radiothon.”

The Welty-Boldt carpenters creatined a plan and began constructing an 8-foot by 8-foot heart.

“The heart is made out of recycled form plywood, so we didn’t have to buy material to make it,” said Tom Conti, Building on the Promise project superintendent.

Marge Zezulewicz

Marge Zezulewicz

All Tower Cranes — the company supplying and managing the 2 cranes on site — gave their blessing to suspend the heart one of their cranes.

“The cranes and the heart are not just a gift to the hospital, but a gift to the community,” said Zezelewicz. “It’s a good reminder to the community of what’s going on at the hospital.”

Zezelewicz has challenged Conti to stay involved with the hospital’s efforts until the building construction is completed in 2015.

“Construction workers are very generous, especially when it comes to kids,” Conti said. “I was so touched by how considerate and compassionate these construction workers are.”

Akron Children’s Hospital to undertake $200 million expansion

Akron Children’s Hospital is launching a $200 million expansion of its Akron campus to meet the current and future needs of children and their families.

Called “Building on the Promise,” the expansion project is the result of significant growth in the hospital’s patient volumes and services.

“Our plan builds on the same promises we made in 1890 when we opened our doors,” said Bill Considine, president and CEO of Akron Children’s Hospital. “We treat each child as our own. We treat others as we would want to be treated. And we turn no child away regardless of the ability to pay. This expansion will ensure our ability to care for the next generation of children.”

Akron Children’s Hospital’s Future Campus Plan

The centerpiece of the plan – a critical care tower near Locust and Exchange streets – will include:

  • A new neonatal intensive care unit with individual rooms for each of the hospital’s tiniest patients and their parents. The current Level III NICU treats the highest level of premature and critically ill newborns and is nationally ranked but has outgrown its space.
  • A new ER with enough room to meet current and future patient volumes. Annual ER visits of more than 60,000 to the Akron campus strain the hospital’s resources in a facility built to accommodate 44,000.
  • Dedicated outpatient surgical suites to accommodate a more than doubling of outpatient procedures in the past 20 years.
  • Dedicated space for several of the hospital’s pediatric subspecialty programs, which keep the highest level of clinical expertise in the community and also help attract and retain nationally-known physicians. The hospital’s medical staff has grown 72 percent since 1991.

In addition, the plan calls for:

  • Expanding the Ronald McDonald House of Akron to accommodate the hospital’s growth.
  • A new six-level, 1,200 space parking deck, already under construction.
  • A new “front door” for the hospital – a child-focused patient and visitor welcome center that will streamline access to the campus.

Two thirds of the cost of the project will be covered through public financing and internal reserves. Philanthropy will play a key role in the success of the campus expansion.

The hospital plans a capital campaign to raise $50 million for the critical care tower and $10 million for the Ronald McDonald House expansion.

While Akron Children’s has made continual improvements, it has been 22 years since the hospital last undertook a major capital campaign.

“Our patient volumes have increased significantly and we are seeing patients from farther distances. Our main campus will always be the place for trauma cases and children needing the most critical care,” said Considine. “We hope to have the support of the community – from the business sector to the many individuals who have been touched in some way by the work we do at Akron Children’s on a daily basis.”

Construction will begin in the spring of 2013 and will be competed in 2015.

The companies assisting Akron Children’s with project management include: the Boldt Company, of Appleton, Wis.; Hasenstab Architects, Inc., of Akron; KLMK Group, of Richmond, Va.; HKS, Inc., of Dallas, Texas; and the Welty Building Company, of Akron.