First Look: Medical Office Building on Racetrack Property

The city has allowed plans for a 72,000 square-foot medical office building to go forward.

Monrovia-based developer the Hale Corporation has plans to construct a 4-story, 72,000 square-foot medical office building adjacent to the recently expanded Arcadia Methodist Hospital.

The proposed building would sit on a 3-acre parcel of Santa Anita Park property, abutting the existing medical building directly across Huntington Drive from Methodist Hospital. 

Hale Corporation President Dick Hale said his company is eager to get started on the project, which the City Council recently green-lighted.

"We're trying to race through it," he said. "We hope to have the entitlements completed by late-February or March 1.

This new medical office building is scheduled to break ground in early 2013, with space available for tenants as early as 2014. According to Hale, early leasing already has the building at 35 percent occupied.

The Methodist Hospital and Foundation Board — which counts Hale as a member — voted to invest $280 million to upgrade the hospital with a new emergency room and patient tower, which opened last year.

The expansion created a need for more medical office space near the hospital.

"Because of the hospital, we have medical doctors all over town. Right now there's a shortage of medical space," Mayor Bob Harbicht said. 

Calling the proposed building "beautiful," Harbicht said it would "be an asset to the community."

However, his and other councilmembers' support for the project does not come without a caveat.

The office building will sit on a portion of an 85-acre parcel of land the city had hoped to turn into a commercial development. In fact, the city had even approved a design for such a development by none other than Rick Caruso, the mastermind behind both the Grove and the Americana at Brand in Glendale.

However, plans for the development fell through in 2010 due to a slew of lawsuits filed by Westfield Santa Anita.

"I was very disappointed that that fell through," Harbicht said. "I think that was ideal for Arcadia. I'm still looking for something else along those lines."

However, since the proposed office building will take up less than 4 percent of the parcel, Harbicht says, plenty of room remains for the commercial development the city hopes to build at some point in the future.

What do you think? Will the medical office building be an asset to Arcadia?

Anita October 12, 2012 at 06:04 PM
I think it will be a great asset! Beautiful building's bring in a much needed variety of doctors for a better health care choice.
Betty Saleh October 13, 2012 at 03:44 PM
Glad we didn't get the Caruso project. I was in Glendale yesterday and the Americana didn't look particularly busy for a Friday night. And we would have had to deal with his ugly billboards and buildings.


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