Oro Valley Hospital administrators are planning a 40,000 to 60,000-square-foot freestanding office building adjacent to an existing 60,000-square-foot medical office structure along Tangerine Road.
"There's a demand for medical office space," said Shawn Strash, chief executive officer at Oro Valley Hospital. "We have physicians coming in to practice and we're looking to put them somewhere close to the hospital."
Strash said he expected the new medical office building would house a dozen or more physician practices, depending on their size, their space needs and the number of staff they'll employ.
He noted the hospital is recruiting physicians in specialties that are currently underserved, especially hospital-based specialties that may have a clinic, but also see patients in a hospital setting. Strash said such specialties include urology, neurology, psychiatry, family practice, urology, gynecology and vascular services.
Strash said he expects to "see a crane on the ground by next summer" and looks forward to completion of the building "18 months from now."
Strash predicted the slowdown in home building in Oro Valley would turn around, and the hospital must be responsive.
"We will see more rooftops in the area in the future, so we want to stay ahead of the curve," Strash said. "And with construction costs being lower right now, there might be a big advantage to building the space ahead of time.
"We have 27 acres here and the physicians would prefer to be on campus and close to the hospital," Strash said. "And while we have a lot of space, it's not a huge hospital so the access for patients is really very simple."
Strash noted that Oro Valley Hospital is still looking to grow its satellite clinics.
"We still have space available at Rancho Vistoso, and we're looking at additional space off Thornydale Road," he said. "We also have a physician at Dove Mountain and a couple at SaddleBrooke, so we want to continue expanding outreach centers as the community demands it."