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State awards MVHS $300 million grant for downtown Utica hospital project

By Eric Reinhardt

Date:

MVHS LogoUTICA, N.Y. — New York State has awarded Mohawk Valley Health System (MVHS) a $300 million grant to help pay for a hospital it wants to build in downtown Utica.

The health-care facility transformation grant is part of the “budget extender” that state lawmakers approved on Monday, MVHS said in a news release issued Tuesday.

MVHS estimates the “integrated health campus” will cost $480 million for a 750,000-square-foot facility. The remaining $180 million will come from MVHS capital, bonds and fundraising, the organization said.

“This is the announcement that we’ve been waiting for,” Scott Perra, president and CEO of MVHS, said in organization’s news release. “It has been quite the journey from the time Gov. Cuomo specifically cited our project in the 2015 State of the State address as part of his proposed $700 million to support upstate New York hospitals. Once the governor and the legislators adopt the final version of the 2018 New York State budget, we will work with the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) on the contract agreement for the $300 million grant. When [it] is in place, we will be able to move forward with the development of an integrated health campus for our community. I am grateful that we are given the chance to improve the health care in our community with a new, state of the art facility.”

MVHS is an affiliation of Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare and St. Elizabeth Medical Center (SEMC), both of Utica. The two organizations teamed up in March 2014.

Following state-budget approval, MVHS will work with the governor’s office and the NYSDOH on the next steps. MVHS will then start working with its selected architect and construction firms and begin the design process.

MVHS in January announced it chose New York City–based NBBJ as the architectural firm. Turner Construction Company, which is also headquartered in New York City, will serve as the project’s construction manager. Turner operates a Syracuse office at 500 Plum St.

Hammes Company, a Brookfield, Wisconsin–based health-care consulting firm, is the project-management company that MVHS hired to facilitate the new hospital project.

The process will also include developing the certificate of need application for the NYSDOH.

Development of the new health-care campus will include input from a number of resources including members of the hospital staff, medical staff, board members, donors, and the community.

It will also include the development of a community-advisory board that will work with health-care administrators, the architects from NBBJ, Turner Construction, and the Hammes Company.

“The journey to get to this point has taken more than two years,” Norman Siegel, chairman of the MVHS board of directors, said in the release. “Now we can really begin to create the vision of a new healthcare future for the Mohawk Valley and make it a reality. It’s an exciting time for our community, our board and our healthcare family.”

As the process continues, MVHS continues to work with the Mohawk Valley EDGE and property owners.

Once it secures the grant, MVHS anticipates it’ll meet with property owners during the second and third quarters of 2017 “with the intent to offer one year options to purchase the properties.”

 

Contact Reinhardt at ereinhardt@cnybj.com

 

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