MOUNT PLEASANT — The future $228 million Advocate Aurora Health combined hospital and medical center cleared another hurdle Wednesday when the Mount Pleasant Plan Commission unanimously approved the site, building and operation plan.

The hospital/medical center is to be built on about 86 acres near the northeast corner of Interstate 94 and Highway 20.

Advocate Aurora plans a 198,000-square-foot medical center and 98,000-square-foot attached medical office building.

The medical center is to include 60 surgical and intensive care beds, four observation beds, five operating rooms and two procedure rooms.

The complex will offer inpatient care, surgical services, an emergency department with intended level-three trauma services as well as many other ancillary services including rehabilitation, imaging, laboratory and pharmacy.

The medical office portion of the site is to house a variety of outpatient services and approximately 24 specialty providers, sports medicine, rehabilitation services and a small conference center.

Construction is expected to begin late this summer or early fall, Brian Esswein, construction manager for Advocate Aurora, said Wednesday. Early 2022 is the targeted opening to patients.

The project’s general contractor will be Mortenson Construction of Minneapolis.

The structure will have one common main entrance with the medical office portion to one side and the hospital to the other.

Nick Burris, the lead project architect for Milwaukee-based HGA, said the site slopes by 20 feet, so facades on the building will be three stories tall and others, four stories.

HGA was trying to reduce the building’s footprint to minimize impact on the land, he said.

The building actually has a third component, Burris said: a diagnostic/treatment section.

“To promote sustainability and environmentally friendly development practices, Advocate Aurora is seeking LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver certification for the project,” Mount Pleasant Planner Robin Palm told the commission.

And special care was taken to preserve as much of the wetland as possible, Palm said.

Palm summarized, “Staff feels this is a well-designed, fantastic addition to our growing village and a future landmark located at the front door of our community.”

 

‘Extensive’ landscape plan

Palm also said the landscape plan for the medical complex is “extensive.” Tryg Hansen, the landscape architect for HGA, elaborated.

“The goal of the site and the landscape was to provide a healing environment,” he said, “not only for the patients and the staff and the organization, but also for the environment through sustainable design.”

The landscape plan creates three approaches, Hansen said: one is natural and native.

The site plan calls for 953 parking spaces and 20 additional handicapped spaces.

A large portion of the agricultural land will be returned to native prairies, he said.

There will also be a transition zone which flanks most of the parking and roadways, Hansen continued. It will be maintainable but with native-character grass and a variety of shade trees.

Finally, there will be a manicured zone with garden and turf areas, perennials and ornamental grasses and trees.

The entire medical complex site lies within the villages Tax Increment District No. 1, Palm said. The hospital itself is tax-exempt, he said, but the medical office building portion of the site is taxable and “should provide a significant increment to TID 1,” upon the closing of that district.

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