Healthcare trend fuels $48M development

A rendering of the planned $48 million medical office development. (Images courtesy of Stanley Shield)

A rendering of the planned $48 million medical office development. (Images courtesy of Stanley Shield)

The medical office market has caught fire in Short Pump.

The Henrico-based Stanley Shield Partnership is under contract to buy 12 acres at Towne Center West, immediately west of Short Pump Town Center, with plans for a $48 million medical office development.

Stanley Shield managing member Jimmy Stanley said the move is indicative of a new trend in medical real estate: bringing healthcare facilities to urban centers frequented by potential patients, opposed to the more traditional practice of building medical offices on or adjacent to hospital campuses.

“We’ve seen a shift even in the last two years in the interest of these medical groups in going to the front-and-center locations,” he said. “Visibility and accessibility are becoming increasingly important.”

The land under contract is owned by the Breeden Co., a Virginia Beach-based real estate firm that developed Towne Center West. The plot is just off West Broad Street on the eastern edge of the development.

"We are somewhat of an urban infill development," Jimmy Stanley said.

“We are somewhat of an urban infill development,” Jimmy Stanley said.

Stanley hopes to break ground on the first of three planned buildings by late summer. The initial office building will run five stories and 110,000 square feet. A second construction phase will add two more buildings to bring the complex’s total square footage to 160,000, but those plans could be consolidated into a single 50,000-square-foot office building.

Stanley said the company has a few interested parties but has yet to lock up any tenants for the building.

Stanley Shield hopes to complete the first of its office buildings in the first quarter of 2015. Ratio Architects designed the project, and Stanley said Commonwealth Construction Management would likely be the general contractor. Willmark Engineering is the project’s site engineer.

The project will be financed with a combination of debt and equity, but Stanley Shield has not finalized a lender.

Short Pump Medical Center will join a growing list of medical office developments in the Short Pump area. Developer Bob Atack has a medical development planned for 70 acres on the northern side of West Broad. Lingerfelt Cos. are building a similarly sized, three-building medical park near the Goochland-Henrico line at the Notch at West Creek.

But as medical office buildings rise farther west, Stanley said an absence of tractors, cranes and work crews will help draw business to a finished Short Pump Medical Center. The office complex will round out major construction projects at Towne Center West, which already hosts the Reflections at West Creek apartments, a Hilton hotel and a retail center.

“We are somewhat of an urban infill development, because all of the property around us, for the most part, is already developed,” he said. “We’re not going to be dealing with 10 more years of construction immediately adjacent to us.”

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