Toronto (Aug. 13, 2007) - Minister of Health and Long-Term Care George Smitherman announced today that seven companies have been pre-qualified to build and finance the expansion and renovation project to Toronto Rehab's University Centre site, one of the hospital's six sites. The companies were selected through a request for qualifications process, which began in April 2007.

"This renovation project is indicative of our government's commitment to modernize and expand health care infrastructure to improve access to quality health care," said George Smitherman. "Once completed, the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute will be able to provide cutting edge research for the benefit of all Ontarians."

Minister Smitherman joined Mark Rochon, President and CEO of Toronto Rehabilitation Institute and hospital staff to announce the pre-qualified bidders during a sign unveiling event on the hospital's grounds.

The following companies have been pre-qualified for this project: " Aecon Construction " Bird Construction " Bondfield Construction " Carillion Canada Inc. " EllisDon " PCL Construction " Vanbots Construction

"We're pleased to see such interest from the construction industry in this project," said David Caplan, Minister of Public Infrastructure Renewal. "Our government is making much-needed improvements to Ontario's infrastructure at an unprecedented rate. These improvements will be made in a way that ensures value for taxpayers' dollars, as we build strong, prosperous communities."

A Request for Qualifications (RFQ) was issued on April 4, 2007. The process identified bid teams with the development, construction and financial capacity required to undertake a project of this size and complexity.

The pre-qualified teams were scored based on the technical and financial details contained in their submissions. Bidders will be invited to respond to a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the project, which is expected to be issued in fall 2007.

"This project is very exciting news for our patients and staff," said Mark Rochon, President and CEO of Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. "With today's announcement, we are one step closer to being able to meet the increasing demand for rehabilitation services in Ontario."

Renovations will be made to the existing 12-storey East Wing and four-storey North Wing. The existing South wing and auditorium will be demolished and a new 13-storey patient-care and research tower will be built. Once completed, Toronto Rehab's University Centre will be a more modern hospital with facilities better designed to provide care to adults undergoing rehabilitation for serious injury and illness including stroke, brain injury and multiple trauma and cancer.

The redevelopment will also include the creation of iDAPT - Intelligent Design for Adaptation, Participation and Technology - one of the most advanced rehabilitation research facilities in the world. Toronto Rehab's iDAPT facilities will significantly change the landscape of rehabilitation research.

Infrastructure Ontario will work with Toronto Rehabilitation Institute to redevelop the University Centre site, which will remain publicly owned, publicly controlled and publicly accountable. Infrastructure Ontario is a Crown corporation dedicated to managing some of the province's larger and more complex infrastructure renewal projects - ensuring they are built on time and on budget.

This project is guided by principles outlined in the Province's Building a Better Tomorrow framework, which ensures public ownership of core assets such as hospitals, schools, and water and wastewater facilities. The Toronto Rehabilitation Institute is one of many hospitals being upgraded and modernized under ReNew Ontario, the government's five-year, $30-billion plus public infrastructure investment plan.

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