News and Information

August 11, 2011

‘Destination Care’ Medical Building Planned For St. Joseph Campus

St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma will raise the standard for efficient and convenient health care by expanding its campus with a new five-story medical office building, a 770-stall parking garage, and a sky bridge connecting the hospital and new building.

Called the Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph, the state-of-the-art facility will be built at 16th and South J streets. Construction is scheduled to begin Sept. 7, with completion projected for the autumn of 2012.

Franciscan Medical Office Building at St. Joseph and Parking Garage
A pedestrian skybridge across busy South J Street will connect the new Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph to the medical center.

The 120,000-square-foot medical facility will be home to Franciscan Medical Group physicians specializing in primary care, orthopedics, neurosciences and women’s care. The building’s design will allow caregivers representing different medical specialties to come together in the same convenient location rather than being housed at different buildings on the St. Joseph campus and throughout Tacoma. This will enable patients to see multiple providers during a single trip without the inconvenience of traveling to multiple sites.

"The Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph will reflect our commitment to providing patient-centered care," said St. Joseph Medical Center President Syd Bersante.

The medical building and parking garage will be developed and co-owned by the Franciscan Health System and Frauenshuh HealthCare Real Estate Solutions. Frauenshuh, a national leader in development of medical properties, owns and manages office buildings at Franciscan hospitals in Lakewood (St. Clare Hospital Specialty Center) and Gig Harbor (Milgard Medical Pavilion at St. Anthony Hospital).

A distinguishing feature of the Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph will be its four full-service "destination care centers." These will offer primary care medicine, orthopedic services, neuroscience specialists (neurologists, neurosurgeons and physiatrists) and women’s care.

"This innovative arrangement of specialists in a one-stop healing environment will benefit our physicians and their patients," said Franciscan Medical Group President and Chief Medical Officer Stephen Spare, MD. "By consolidating providers and services, we will enhance both the efficiency of care and the convenience of care."

A pedestrian sky bridge across busy J Street will link the new medical office building to the St. Joseph Outpatient Center, which houses: the Walters Day Surgery Center; the Center for Advanced Endoscopy for gastrointestinal procedures; diagnostic imaging; physical, speech and occupational therapies; and other services. The outpatient center is connected to the 343-bed hospital.

"Providers in the new Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph will be able to refer patients to specialists within the same building or to hospital-based services that are available just across the sky bridge at St. Joseph Medical Center," Dr. Spare said. "This grouping of services will foster collaboration among specialists and result in improved experiences for our patients."

Expansion of the St. Joseph campus will also include the addition of a 770-stall parking garage adjacent to the medical office building, plus an outdoor sitting area.

The designated construction site is on Franciscan Health System property now used for parking by patients and visitors at St. Joseph Medical Center. During construction, the number of parking spaces on the hospital’s campus will be fewer than usual until the new garage opens. To minimize temporary parking issues, St. Joseph will provide regular shuttle service for employees to and from off-site parking. Staff will also be encouraged to use public transportation, carpools and vanpools when traveling to and from work. Employees are eligible for a travel subsidy of up to $36 per month as part Franciscan’s commute-trip reduction program.

The popular valet service for patients and visitors at St. Joseph Medical Center will continue from 5 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Perkins & Will, based in Seattle, is the architect for the Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph. Aldrich & Associates, of Bothell, Wash., is the general contractor. The project development cost will be about $62 million. The official address of the new medical building will be 1608 South J St.

In addition to the medical center and outpatient center, other facilities on the St. Joseph campus include the St. Joseph Medical Pavilion, St. Joseph Medical Clinic, Physicians Medical Center and Northwest Medical Pavilion. About 3,700 employees of the Franciscan Health System and Franciscan Medical Group work at the St. Joseph campus.

Franciscan Health System is affiliated with Catholic Health Initiatives, based in Englewood, Colo. and the third-largest Catholic health system in the U.S.

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