OakLeaf Surgical to build complex in Altoona
Posted: March 16, 2012
The developer of a new OakLeaf Surgical Hospital announced late last week that he will be developing a $25 million hospital and ambulatory surgical center in the River Prairie Development in Altoona instead of Eau Claire.
According to Robb Majeski of Cottagewood Group, who will be developing the 64,000-square-foot hospital and 20,000-square-foot surgical center, the project is slated to begin later this summer or early fall with the new hospital to be open by 2014. In addition, Majeski said he has been in contact with other interested parties who may wish to move into the 18-acre parcel located on the southeast corner of the Highway 53 Freeway and East Willson Drive.
"We're working with a couple of users that I'm hoping to see materialize in the next couple of months," said Majeski, who added that Dr. John Drawbert, chairman of OakLeaf Surgical Hospital announced plans to move Chippewa Valley Orthopedics and Northwoods Therapy to the River Prairie site as well.
City of Altoona Manager Mike Golat said he initiated discussions with Majeski and OakLeaf in late December. However, City of Eau Claire officials were unaware of the change in development plans.
"Our contact with OakLeaf was that they submitted site plans for construction of their units, the addition to the hospital and the new clinic building. All the plans were approved. The first we heard about their plans changing was when we read it in the newspaper (The Leader Telegram)," said Eau Claire Planner Tom Reiter.
OakLeaf, a hospital owned by independent physicians, was established in 2001. The River Prairie site has been designated as a tax incremental finance (TIF) district by the City of Altoona since 2002.TBL