BELPRE - The new $12 million expansion of the Health Bridge Medical Park is on track to be built and open to patients in November, according to a spokesperson for Marietta Memorial Hospital.
"We expect to be finished and open this November," said Jennifer Offenberger, director of marketing and public relations for Memorial Health System, which includes both Selby General Hospital and MMH.
In early November 2010, the hospital announced it would be expanding its existing Belpre facility at Health Bridge on Farson Avenue.
Ground was broken on Marietta Memorial Hospital’s expansion of the Health Bridge Medical Park in Belpre last November.
The expansion will include a 50,000 square foot two-story building addition to the medical plaza that will house urgent care facilities, an expansion of the current Strecker Cancer Center office in Belpre and physicians' offices.
Offenberger said the hospital chose to expand the Belpre services because there is a need in that area of the county and the hospital and its affiliated doctors want to help as many people as possible.
The decision to build a larger cancer center is because the current Belpre facility grows by about 400 new patient each year and the need continues to increase, she said.
The project is a partnership between the Memorial Health System and the PM Company, which purchased the land in the western area of Belpre.
During the groundbreaking ceremony in 2010, Pat Minnite Sr. with the PM Company said his business set out to build a shopping complex in the area and when they heard MMH was looking into building a more complete southern campus, the marriage worked out.
Belpre Mayor Mike Lorentz said the project will change the footprint of Belpre with the expected growth of the now relatively open area.
"It's wonderful to be in this position and see the growth coming into our city," Lorentz said.
Along with the announcement of the medical complex, Minnite said there are plans to construct a shopping complex in the Farson Street area.
The shopping center is expected to have ground broken in the summer, he said.