ROSELAND MEDICAL DISTRICT PLAN APPROVAL EXPECTED
The Master Plan for the Roseland Medical District is expected to be approved later this summer. A draft of the plan was submitted to the Department of Planning and Development’s Committee on Design in mid-May.
Roseland Medical District encompasses South Eggleston Avenue to the west, West 110th Street to the north, South Edbrooke Avenue to the east and West 112th Street to the south, and includes 95 acres.
In 2011, the Roseland Medical District was established by the State of Illinois. The service area of the medical district includes parts of Washington Heights, Beverly, Morgan Park and Burnside, as well as Roseland, Pullman, West Pullman and Riverdale.
In the earlier part of the year, there were roundtables with the medical industry. The Master Plan draft, along with draft implementation strategy took place in January/February. In March/April, the Medical District Commission and Hospital Workshop took place. The Draft Plan designs guidelines, as well as implementation strategy were discussed. In May, the final plan and guidelines and implementation strategy were discussed.
There is a proposal for more than 200,000 square feet of mixed use, which would include 38,000 square feet for office space, 75,000 square feet for a health center, 15,000 square feet for a resource center, 15,000 square feet for retail, 18,000 square feet for culture and education space and 24,000 square feet for a fitness center. There are plans to also make the community more walkable, with street improvements and connection to the park, with walkways.
Abraham Lacy, president of the Far South Development Corporation, said the development is long awaited, and that the plan calls for new outpatient clinics and healthcare services for the neighborhood.
“We’re not looking to build a new hospital; we’re looking to support the current Roseland Community Hospital. There’s a need for outpatient services, especially around maternity health. This will bring much needed services to an area that has well over 50,000-plus people who do not have access to quality healthcare,” Lacy said.
Development of the Roseland Medical District also will spur jobs in construction and healthcare that do not exist currently. In-fill housing is also something needed within the Roseland community, and there are plans for developing that as part of the Medical District. Lacy estimates there are more than 2,000 vacant properties or vacant plots of land in the community. There hasn’t been a lot of housing renovations or new home construction in the area. The hope is that the development will bring jobs and people who want to live in the area.
When it comes to transportation infrastructure, the Roseland Medical District Commission has been working closely with the Red Line Extension team and Chicago Transit Authority. On the western border of the Medical District, the 111th Street Terminal will be placed. Construction for that terminal is set to start construction 2025 or 2026.
As part of the Roseland Transformation Plan, Roseland Hospital will be renovated to include an OB-GYN and behavioral therapy, situated above the Emergency Room. There will also be renovations to the surgery rooms.
The hope is that with the Roseland Medical District, there will be an influx of academics with the training opportunities, and it will create a pipeline of healthcare and social service providers. These things will help stabilize an area that desperately needs those kinds of resources.
The Roseland Medical District has the support of the Illinois Black Legislative Caucus, Congresswoman Robin Kelly, Alderwoman Carrie Austin, Alderman Anthony Beale and Mayor Lori Lightfoot.
According to Lacy, once the plan is approved by the Planning Commission, the 200,000 square feet at 111th and State Street will be rezoned, and most of everything else is zoned for hospital and healthcare use. It is anticipated that it will take two years, after the plan is approved for any vertical development to take place.
“This is the anchor that is going to sustain the Roseland neighborhood, the long-awaited investment. This is at the core of the City’s INVEST South/West project,” Lacy said. “We’re very excited about it. We think this will be the silver lining that is needed to pick up Roseland out of the decades of dilapidation and move it toward a much more brighter future.”
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