No immediate plans for redevelopment, hospital foundation says after $100M land acquisition near VGH

After announcing the largest real estate investment by a hospital foundation in BC history this week, the VGH and UBC Hospital Foundation says it will be a while before plans for redevelopment are put in motion.

The foundation is spending $100 million to acquire the 900 block of West 12th Avenue from its previous owners in a deal the organization’s president and CEO Angela Chapman calls a “generational opportunity.”

In an interview with CTV News this week, Chapman said the 1.4-acre property immediately adjacent to Vancouver General Hospital became available because the previous owners are retiring from managing the two buildings on the property.

Those buildings include Windermere Care Center – a 14-storey long-term care home with 210 beds – and a three-storey rental apartment building with 26 units.

Chapman told CTV News any redevelopment of the site will be subject to Vancouver’s Broadway plan, as well as the specific needs of Vancouver General Hospital as it expands its campus.

“At this point, we don’t have any very specific plans,” Chapman said. “I think ideally we’d like to move in the next few years with the development plans, but there’s a number of steps in that … our goal, of course, is to use (the site) to support Vancouver General Hospital.”

Windermere Care Center is expected to remain for the long term, with the hospital foundation leasing it to Vancouver Coastal Health, which will manage the facility.

Chapman said the foundation views the care center lease as a creative way to generate additional, ongoing revenue streams that can be used to further support health care at the hospital.

“More and more charitable organizations like ourselves are looking at new and different ways to raise funds and have ongoing revenue,” she said. “This is just one example of an innovative approach.”

In the short term, the rental building will serve as a source of revenue, too. The foundation has hired a property management company to manage the building on its behalf.

When plans for the hospital’s expanded campus are finalized, however, it’s likely that the rental property will be replaced by some kind of health-care facility, Chapman said.

“There is currently an apartment building on that corner lot, which becomes an investment for the foundation, with our long-term view of converting the entire block over to support the needs of health care for the Lower Mainland,” she said.

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