- Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center officials have revealed plans for a $650 million expansion, the nonprofit's biggest project ever, according to the Cincinnati Business Courier.
- The project will include a new 650,000-square-foot, eight-story patient tower, remodeling of existing space, a new parking garage underneath the tower and an expansion of existing parking facilities.
- Pending approval from the Cincinnati City Council, construction is set to begin on the first-phase expansion portion of the project, which would see the existing garage work completed by December 2018 and the revamped clinical space finished by 2021 or 2022.
The hospital already employs nearly 15,500 people, and the project could create another 600 jobs. The move to update and expand the hospital's development follows a stream of other mega hospital projects, including the $1 billion Boston Children's Hospital expansion, which won funding approval from the Massachusetts Public Health Council last October, the Mayo Clinic's $6 billion health district project and the nearly $2 billion Veterans Administration hospital in Aurora, CO.
Unlike the Boston Children's Hospital project, there seems to be little controversy surrounding the Cincinnati Children's Hospital's expansion. In Boston's case, critics of the expansion — who argued that the money spent on the project would increase Children's patient costs — lost their appeal in November to stop construction. The group also objected to the demolition of an existing garden so that the hospital could build the new medical tower.
Earlier this year, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (CHOA) also announced a $1 billion project. The system will construct a new pediatric center in the Atlanta suburb of Brookhaven and will provide more beds, urgent and outpatient clinics and a 260,000-square-foot specialized care building.
By the time the project is finished in six to eight years, the healthcare landscape could be significantly different than it is now, as President Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress have vowed to repeal and replace President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act. CHOA officials, however, said the state Children's Healthcare Insurance Program will not be affected by changes at the federal level.