| Posted: Saturday, Aug 11, 2012 06:00 am
NorthWest Property Corporation (NWPC) is one step closer to getting shovels in the ground for St. Albert’s newest medical complex.
Earlier this month, the company became the official landowner of the plot adjacent to the Sturgeon Community Hospital where the Sturgeon Medical Arts Centre is projected.
“The next thing that we want to do is get together, the city (with NWPC), and talk about what kind of marketing strategies we can put in place to get involved with the medical community and doctors,” said councillor Malcolm Parker.
The land deal came roughly one month behind schedule, although Parker said the delay is not significant and will not delay the project, which is expected to open its doors in fall 2013.
In May, NWPC announced its plan to develop the 60,000 square-foot, three-storey complex estimated to cost $15 to $18 million dollars.
The facility is intended to house a variety of medical practices, such as family doctors, pharmacies and medical labs. Parker said he would like to see at least a dozen doctors set up shop at the facility.
“That’s kind of what’s driving the whole project is to attract doctors,” he said. “St. Albert is a good place to move to. It’s got the high quality of life that I think people are looking for and all the amenities, so it’s an attractive community and a good place to set up a practice.”
NWPC vice president of development Terry Schmitt said in May that he would like to see roughly half of the space pre-leased before development begins.
“That’s a bit of a target number,” Parker said. “The idea behind that is if you can lease 40 to 50 per cent, then it certainly makes the financing a lot easier.”
Karnie Vertz, principal with leasing agent Avison Young, said no deals have been completed to date.
“We’ve just begun marketing the building and we’ve received some very positive interest from the marketplace,” he said. “There’s a number of parties that are interested in this site.”
Vertz said all medical professions are being targeted, although a general practice clinic is a “primary goal.”
NWPC develops medical-specific buildings across Canada, with the Sturgeon Medical Arts Centre marking the first development in St. Albert.