Kaiser buys land for Santa Rosa medical office building

[caption id="attachment_95752" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Kaiser Permanente wants to have primary medical care offices in southwest Santa Rosa.[/caption]

SANTA ROSA -- Kaiser Permanente has put details to plans revealed several months ago for a southwest Santa Rosa medical office building, by purchasing the land and securing a preliminary city green light on the design for a 75,000-square-foot structure there.

On July 17, the Oakland-based nonprofit health care organization purchased 10.85 acres in four parcels on Mercury Way off Corporate Center Parkway in the Northpoint Corporate Center business park for $5.25 a square foot, or $2.48 million, according to the seller.

Kaiser wants to build a three-story medical office building for primary care services -- family medicine, health education, obstetrics, gynecology, dermatology and podiatry -- and supporting imaging, laboratory and pharmacy units, according to the June 19 presentation packet for the Santa Rosa Design Review Board. The board unanimously approved the preliminary design and is set to review the final design soon.

"We want to make sure our facilities are local," said Ed Walera, manager for Kaiser's capital projects and construction team in Marin and Sonoma counties. "We do not want everything compacted in one area. We want to serve southern Santa Rosa and Sebastopol and southwest Santa Rosa."

Kaiser's Santa Rosa facilities are concentrated around its medical center and medical office building at the north end of the city, six miles away from the Northpoint site by highways 12 and 101.

This would be the newest Sonoma County project for Kaiser since the north tower expansion at the medical center in 2011 and construction of the medical office building several years ago. Kaiser has Sonoma County medical office buildings in Rohnert Park and Petaluma.

The timeline and estimated cost for the new medical office building haven't been determined because organizational leadership is still weighing finances and the evolving health reform--driven landscape under the Affordable Care Act, according to Mr. Walera.

But the need for health care services has grown more acute since the April 28 closure of 37-bed Palm Drive Hospital in Sebastopol. Efforts are underway to return emergency care to that hospital. However, Kaiser has no plans at this time to add emergency or urgent care to the Northpoint building, according to Mr. Walera.

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