Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Another Pitch for IU's Med School ; Promenade Would Benefit

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Another Pitch for IU's Med School ; Promenade Would Benefit

Article excerpt

When Indiana University requests proposals from local sites interested in its medical school expansion, The Promenade on Evansville's East Side will have a strong one to offer, developers said Wednesday. The property at North Burkhardt and Oak Grove roads has about 225 acres, 69 of which will be made available for IU, said Steve Martin with Hirsch-Martin Development LLC. That's likely more than IU would need, at first, but Martin said the campus will need room for growth.

"The potential for additional growth is huge," Martin said during a news conference at The Martin Group's Evansville office. "Perhaps, additional dental, pharmacy or some additional technology that we don't even know about today. So let's plan for the future,"

Developers of The Promenade unveiled plans for a multiuse development, with IU including a residential community with 224 apartments, retail, entertainment, business and a hotel with a small conference center. Plans to develop the site date back several years but were stalled by the 2008 economic downturn.

Martin said development of the land does not depend on IU choosing it for the medical school expansion. But he said The Promenade is an ideal site for the campus, and it would be a catalyst to move The Promenade forward at a faster pace.

"Instead of a 10-year project, it might end up being a five- year project (if IU is a part of it)," Martin said.

The Promenade's acreage is inside the city limits. Martin said the land is ready for construction, with city utilities and services available. It is part of Tax Increment Financing District on the East Side.

Martin noted the site's proximity to Deaconess Gateway Hospital, St. Mary's Medical Center and other East Side medical facilities, along with its quick access to transportation arteries that lead to Jasper, Ind., and Owensboro, Ky. Hospitals in Evansville, Jasper and Owensboro will host medical residency programs.

IU is to request proposals for the expanded local medical school in November, and the Board of Trustees is to choose a site by January. …

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