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JEFFERSON CITY, MO-SSM Health Care plans to build a $200 million new hospital here to replace its St. Mary’s Health Center. The new 380,000 sf new facility will go up on 110-acres along Missouri Route 179 between West Edgewood Drive and Route C, about five miles from the current center. The Lawrence Group and HGA Architects & Engineers, both based in St. Louis, are designing the new facility.

The new hospital will be almost 40% larger than the current facility, says Michael Schnarre, a principal with Lawrence. The building will have 167 private patient rooms. “The current hospital has semi-private rooms now,” Schnarre says. “It will be essentially the same number of beds. Private isn’t just a trend anymore, it’s in our guidelines. People are demanding more in the marketplace. Private rooms are more desirable, and plus you don’t have to worry about having to assign based on the sex of the patient, or whether they get along in the same room.”

He tells GlobeSt.com that the property will also likely have more than one medical office facility on the campus, including one attached to the hospital building. “There’s some out-lots that we envision being set aside for more future development, such as cancer centers or rehabilitation buildings. There is a definite trend to decentralize the outpatient care, and this facility is no different,” Schnarre says. The $200 million includes everything for the hospital building, including $130 million for the construction, but does not include the medical office facilities, he says.

Earlier this year, it looked like the company was going to have to wait until 2012 to get a replacement hospital. The company told the public that its plans had to be postponed, and would be reconsidered “as early as 2010,” the hospital owner said in a statement late last year. “It was determined that the financial performance of the project could not support the $248 million investment at this time,” the company said in the statement. However, that tone changed in a release earlier this year. “The hospital team has strengthened St. Mary’s financial outlook,” said Bill Schoenhard, EVP and COO of SSM, in the statement. On Monday, SSM officials deferred questions to St. Mary’s staff, who did not return calls for comment.

“Early this year there was a complete reversal by the company,” Schnarre tells GlobeSt.com. “Now we’re going to have the new project complete by 2012.” Planning for the project has just started, and construction will likely start in fall 2009, he says. A construction management firm has not yet been selected.

The current facility is landlocked, surrounded by highways, Schnarre says. “I don’t know what they plan on doing with that facility, but I know they’re not going to keep it,” he says.

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