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LAWRENCEVILLE, GA-The start of a planned $56-million, 100-bed expansion at the 350-bed Gwinnett Medical Center here could hinge on a Gwinnett County commission vote scheduled by the end of November. The state has already approved the expansion, but hospital officials have delayed a construction start until the county decides how much taxpayer money can be contributed to the project, sources tell GlobeSt.com.

Hospital officials want to build a five-story tower atop the existing three-story building at Highways 316 and 120 in this Atlanta suburb. The planning and construction of the project are slated to take three years. Officials hope the addition to the 21-year-old structure will attract a larger pool of doctors and generate more patient traffic.

In 2003, a north addition was added to the main Gwinnett Medical Center building to provide space for an expanded laboratory, an 18-bed Center for Neuroscience and an enlarged cafeteria. The 575 Outpatient Imaging Center also opened to increase capacity and reduce waiting times for outpatients requiring imaging services.

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