Nearly a year in the making, the collaboration between The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and the City of Hilliard on a medical and health and wellness center within the future Community Recreation and Wellness Center being from Hilliard is about to come to fruition.
The $66.4 million leisure and wellness center is to be built on a 125-acre portion on the south side of Scioto Darby Road and west of the future Cosgray Road extension.
According to current plans, a groundbreaking ceremony for the 105,000 square foot center is scheduled for May 2023 with an expected opening in the first quarter of 2025, according to David Ball, director of community relations for the town of Hilliard.
On Nov. 14, Hilliard City Council approved a 5-1 resolution allowing Hilliard City Manager Michelle Crandall to enter into a lease agreement with Ohio State University for OSU to lease 25,000 square feet from the center to operate its dedicated part.
Council Speaker Andy Teater recused himself from considering the resolution, and Councilman Les Carrier voted against the measure.
“Hilliard taxpayers are building a long-term referral facility and service for a private entity with our tax dollars. If you want to grow in our community, you have to pay for your growth,” Carrier said after the vote on the resolution.
But city administrators said the partnership must benefit residents by giving them access to OSU medical services and must also benefit the city financially, as the revenue from the lease must offset the cost of building it. .
The proposed 15-year lease is for 25,000 square feet and includes options for two five-year renewals. The base rent is $14 per square foot with an annual increase of 2%, plus an estimated amount to cover maintenance expenses for common areas.
At $14 per square foot, OSU must pay $350,000 per year to Hilliard, according to the lease agreement.
OSU must also set aside $250,000 from which the city will draw, as needed, for maintenance of common areas during the term of the lease, for landscaping, snow removal and similar maintenance, according to the assistant manager of Hilliard, Dan Rally.
Ralley presented the resolution to city council on November 14.
“It’s not just a medical building,” Ralley said, adding that the services OSU must provide can be integrated into the community, especially at the adjacent Phyllis A. Ernst Senior Center.
The future OSU Wexner Medical Center site is expected to offer Hilliard “triple benefits,” Ralley said, including access to health care, the presence of an OSU facility in the community, and is “an extraordinarily good deal for the city”, as it is a question of subsidizing the construction of the community center of the city.
A proposal for an integrated medical and health center had been considered since Hilliard voters approved Number 22 in November 2021.
The measure increased the city’s income tax from 2.0 to 2.5 percent, and the additional revenue is earmarked for the construction of the future Community Recreation and Wellness Center and other programs or recreation and park infrastructure.
The additional 0.5 percentage points should generate about $7.5 million per year, according to city finance director David Delande.
OSU and Hilliard announced on April 29 OSU’s collaboration to operate a medical, health and wellness center within the future Hilliard Community Center.
This project aims to bring together a wide range of complementary wellness, educational and clinical services, as well as other community programs and classes, according to Ball.
Medical, health and wellness services and programs planned for this portion of the building include immediate same-day care, immediate orthopedic care, orthopedic and sports medicine providers, arthritis care and behavioral health , Ball said.
It also includes plans for health, education and wellness learning, including training for family care providers, community health profiling and training, and opportunities for Hilliard students to shadow a professional career in the healthcare field.
The OSU center is expected to create new jobs, according to Hilliard’s director of economic development, David Meadows.
“Ohio State estimates an annual payroll of up to $4.5 million, which would translate into significant tax revenue for the city,” Meadows said.
“Becoming a health and wellness partner with the City of Hilliard will give Ohio State Wexner Medical Center the ability to provide residents with greater access to high-quality care while expanding and strengthening our existing connections,” said said Dan Like, executive director of ambulatory services. for Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, said in a news release announcing the lease.