Despite gentrification, Cook County plans new $240M South Side hospital

Dr. John Jay Shannon, CEO of Cook County Health and Provident Hospital (Credit: Cook County Health and Wikipedia)

Dr. John Jay Shannon, CEO of Cook County Health and Provident Hospital (Credit: Cook County Health and Wikipedia)

Patient dollars — not taxpayer funds — are expected to fund a $242 million hospital and outpatient center in Bronzeville.

If it gets the green light from the state health facilities board, Cook County Health will construct an eight-story, 42-bed medical facility at 29th and Dearborn in the South Side, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Provident Hospital, renowned as a pioneering African American hospital, would operate the medical center, which is just west of the current 79-bed hospital. The existing building would be demolished.

“It’s going to be in a neighborhood of need for sure even though … we know gentrification is happening in a lot of different areas of the South Side,” said Dr. John Jay Shannon, CEO of Cook County Health, according to the report.

Though the bed count has been reduced, the new building would also have the space for 70 outpatient exam rooms.

Plans for the new facility follow a 2014 study that estimated Provident would need to spend at least $298 million modifying existing facilities to keep pace with competitors.

The project is part of Cook County Health’s larger plan to modernize hospital facilities. Most of the Provident project will be paid for with $192 million in bonds to be paid down in 20 years, from revenue made on patients, Shannon said. The rest would come out of the hospital’s operating budget. Construction on the new building is expected to be completed in April 2023.

In February, MCZ Development secured a $27 million loan for its long-delayed plan to convert the vacant Edgewater Medical Center into apartments. [Chicago Sun-Times]James Kleimann

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