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New Colorado VA hospital finally opens, late and over budget

Posted at 2:59 PM, Jul 21, 2018

AURORA, Colo. (AP) — A $1.7 billion veterans hospital in suburban Denver has opened its doors to visitors after a ceremonial ribbon-cutting.

Veterans strolled the halls and peered into operating rooms at the Rocky Mountain Regional VA Medical Center in Aurora on Saturday.

The new facility replaces an aging and crowded hospital in Denver.

Outpatient services will begin moving in on July 27, and hospitalized veterans will be transferred starting Aug. 4.

The medical center is more than $1 billion over budget and five years behind schedule.

Federal investigators blamed the overruns on VA executives, saying they opted for a lavish design, tried to use a complicated contract they didn’t fully understand, failed to get the designers and builders to agree on plans and costs and didn’t oversee the work closely enough.

Watch the ribbon-cutting ceremony in the video below: