Children’s Hospital breaks ground in South Fayette
Government officials and residents gathered in South Fayette Township the morning of May 7 to celebrate the groundbreaking of a future location of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC that will be called Children’s South. About 50 people attended the groundbreaking for the new pediatric facility, which will be located on 2.6 acres of property adjacent to the former Star City Theater property along Hickory Grade Road and Route 50. Those in attendance included South Fayette Township Commissioners and employees and school board members and administrators, as well as personnel from Children’s Hospital and Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.
During his remarks, Fitzgerald said the opening of Children’s Hospital in Lawrenceville “transformed” that community. “This facility will also enhance what’s going on here in South Fayette. It will really enhance this part of the county,” he said. “We’re delighted at the county level. It’s an exciting day to break ground here.”
South Fayette Township Manager Ryan Eggleston said the groundbreaking of the new pediatric facility “ushers in the beginning of a new journey in healthcare.” He also thanked the board of commissioners “for turning this vision into reality.” Eggleston added, “The community of South Fayette and adjacent areas will be forever impacted,” by the opening of the new facility.
Deron Gabriel, president of South Fayette Township Board of Commissioners, thanked the board for their leadership in bringing the facility to the township. He said by bringing healthcare services for children to the township it will make it “a better, safer place for our children.” Gabriel added, as far as development in the township with the new Children’s Hospital facility and the forthcoming Newbury Market, “We’re really going to see a synergy between developments here on Route 50. We’re very excited.”
Chris Gessner, president of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, said that a new facility has been planned for a long time because “we’ve outgrown our Bethel Park space.” He said he was happy to have worked out an agreement with the township for the property.
The facility is tentatively set to open in October 2014.
Plans for the new facility have been in the works since early 2012, when in March, commissioners in South Fayette passed a resolution accepting UPMC’s $1.65 million bid for the 2.6 acre parcel. The bid also included a $100,000 contribution to the township to go toward the funding of its civic center project at the former theater site.
According to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, the new 60,000 square-foot Children’s South facility will be LEED certified and feature expanded outpatient services including pediatric sub-specialty care, various therapies, primary care, advanced imaging services and after-hours urgent care. The four-story facility will also include a 15,000 square-foot open gym and exam room space for rehabilitation services to include speech, audiology, physical therapy and occupational therapy.