Officials from the city of Detroit, the state and Wayne State University celebrated the launch of a new medical office building that will become the home of the WSU Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences.
The ceremonial groundbreaking for the new Wayne State University Medical Office Building at Tolan Park took place June 15. The site is north of Mack Avenue on the east side of Beaubien.
Queen Lillian LLC, a Detroit-based architectural firm, has started construction of the new building. The offices also will house a portion of the WSU School of Medicine’s Internal Medicine Department.
The five-story medical office building is going up on 2.7 acres adjacent to Tolan Park. The site provides a strategic location within the medical area of Midtown, with close proximity to the WSU School of Medicine campus and the hospitals of the Detroit Medical Center.
Located across Beaubien from Children’s Hospital of Michigan, the million project will result in 62,846 square feet of new office space. The developers anticipate the building will be completed in January 2013.
“Being a Detroiter, I want to be part of the city’s resurgence,” said Christopher Jackson, who, with Jim Jenkins, is one of the two principals of Queen Lillian LLC. “I wanted to invest in Midtown, and this project will add millions to the city’s tax base, which will produce long-term growth for Detroit. Large corporations such as the Detroit Medical Center, Henry Ford Health System and Dan Gilbert see the opportunities and potential. There are many opportunities for small businesses and entrepreneurs to take part and make a difference.”
Wayne State University will lease the building from Queen Lillian LLC for a 25-year period. At the end of that term, the university will have the option to purchase the building for a payment.
Valerie M. Parisi, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., dean of the School of Medicine, noted that the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences is now housed in older buildings on Larned, east of Interstate-75, separated from the medical campus. “When this building is completed, they’ll be home, and have a real, physical presence on the campus of the medical school, and on Midtown’s medical campus,” she said. “This new building also will be more convenient for our patients, who often are first seen at one of the hospitals in the Detroit Medical Center system. Queen Lillian has promised a beautiful new edifice, one that will bring more construction jobs to the city, will further complement the growing Midtown area and that will add to the revitalization of Detroit. I’m sure they will deliver, and we are proud to be a part of that effort.”
Jackson said the project is expected to create approximately 280 construction jobs.
The design of the building will incorporate essential considerations specific to the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, including state-of-the-art telecommunications technology systems designed for future flexibility and expansion.
The building will be constructed in a manner that will allow it to qualify for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification, including initiatives to conserve natural resources, reduce operating costs and improve employee productivity and satisfaction. LEED certification is achieved by meeting specific requirements in five environmental categories — site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
“It is appropriate and timely that we inaugurated a new building for the Wayne State University School of Medicine that, among other things, will be used to house the Department of Psychiatry,” said David Rosenberg, M.D., interim chair of the department. “It is appropriate because we have entered a new era in modern biological psychiatry. The department is grateful to Dean Parisi, Ken Lee (vice dean of Business Affairs) and the School of Medicine for its confidence in our department and for recognizing our need to keep pace with the rapid developments in our field.
“This modern facility will allow us to gather in and house the various components of our department,” Dr. Rosenberg added. “It will also enable us to be more efficient in our research, teaching and service to the community and patients and family we serve. We pledge to devote ourselves to justifying the confidence placed in our department and demonstrating that the investment the School of Medicine is making in supporting our department and the Tolan Park building was a very wise decision.”
Jenkins Construction, a Detroit-based contractor and construction manager, is serving as construction manager for the project. The firm has a successful track record of completing projects for Wayne State University, including the Welcome Center at the corner of Woodward and Warren Avenue and the nearby parking deck on Cass Avenue.