Thursday, November 20, 2003

Hospital site to be firmed up in Jan.



By John Kiesewetter
The Cincinnati Enquirer

MIDDLETOWN - The exact location for a new Middletown Regional Hospital east of I-75 finally will be known in January.

The city will close on property for the new facility near the northeast corner of Ohio 122 and Union Road in January, says Les Landen, city law director.

City Council Tuesday authorized the city to advertise issuing $5.6 million in municipal bonds to buy land for the hospital, landlocked on McKnight Drive in a central Middletown neighborhood.

The city signed an agreement last year with the hospital to help buy land for the new medical facility. The purchase represents only part of the 550 acres needed for the hospital, Landen says. The city will hold title to the property until construction begins, he says.

Middletown Regional Hospital, the city's second-largest employer, has been looking to move east of the city, and closer to the interstate, for 21/2 years. The hospital plans a $125 million hospital on a campus with health-related businesses.

Middletown annexed the northeast corner of Ohio 122 and Union Road from Warren County's Franklin Township in 1997.

The hospital originally planned to build at Union and Greentree roads in Turtlecreek Township, about two miles south of Ohio 122. But Warren County commissioners and township activists opposed the site, which did not have direct access to I-75.

E-mail jkiesewetter@enquirer.com




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