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|The new Greeley Emergency and Surgery Center is scheduled to open in Novemer 2012. The center will be located at the southeast corner of 71st Avenue and 10th Street, one of the more trafficked areas due to North Gate Village and King Soopers Marketplace.
When completed in the fall, University of Colorado Health's new free-standing emergency department and one-day surgery center will mean more to the Greeley community than increased access to medical services.
Located in west Greeley, the medical building is on schedule to be completed in October and opened in November. By mid-June, the skeleton of the building was done with floors poured and the exterior steel structure completed. Interior framing was about 40 percent finished.
The 22,000-square-foot building will be the work home of 75 FTEs, which translate into about 96 full- and part-time doctors, nurses and support employees. The total annual salary will be $4.6 million.
That's a healthy shot in the arm for any local economy in Colorado. Since most new employees might live in Greeley or nearby, this will mostly be new money entering the community's economy.
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Like most Colorado communities, Greeley's economy has plunged in and out of valleys during the last five years. Now is the time of a tepid upswing that is expected to continue with the help of health care, one of Weld County's top three industries.
The new money arriving because of the medical center's presence has multiplying benefits that will extend far out into the economic scene.
Bruce Biggi, Greeley's economic development manager, said the project's financial benefit may equate to a $9.2 million economic boost for the community. Using the Federal Reserve's fiscal impact tools, Biggi analyzed the direct economic impact of the wages from the new UC Health jobs and the indirect impact of such things as the possible creation of other new jobs needed to serve the UC Health business and additional sales and property taxes.
In simple terms, the working theory is that most UC Health employees in the newly created jobs and their families will spend pay checks in Greeley to purchase groceries, entertainment, household goods, and such big-ticketed items as vehicles and homes. Those new sources of revenue will put more money into local pocketbooks, which in turn will encourage more spending throughout the local economy.
"We are truly pleased to have the new project in our community," Biggi said.
Although it's too early to know, it's likely the center's presence may generate new businesses and additional jobs as more local services are necessary to meet the consumer needs of employees and the medical business.
This happened in a significant way in Fort Collins after Harmony Campus opened a dozen years ago. The campus was built on 94 acres of undeveloped land in what was mostly a rural area. At the time, city of Fort Collins economic forecasters predicted another 9,000 jobs would be added to the local economy, particularly along Harmony Road, to accommodate the new medical services and the additional payroll.
Once Harmony Campus opened, the Harmony Road corridor boomed with new businesses, new neighborhoods and new jobs, as well as new offices opened by physicians so they could be close to the medical services at Harmony Campus. Harmony Campus became the anchor that drew in all of these additions.
Becky Safarik, Greeley's assistant city manager, said the medical center will help enhance growth in a part of the Greeley where development has become active only in recent times. The center will be located at the southeast corner of 71st Avenue and 10th Street, one of the more trafficked areas due to North Gate Village and King Soopers Marketplace.
"The new medical services will offer a good balance to the other commercial uses developing now in this area of Greeley," she said. "The city encourages strong building and site design, especially along its key entryways. The new facility will complement this community goal and be an attractive addition to this important Greeley travel corridor."
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