At the August Mint Hill Chamber meeting, Roland Bibeau, President of Matthews Presbyterian Hospital, presented the bad news: there will be another delay to building the Presbyterian Hospital on Hwy. 24/27 just outside of Mint Hill.
“Things are bad out there,” Bibeau said. “The population is stagnant and the same thing is happening with healthcare. We have a guaranteed date of 2018 to the state.”
Bibeau said the plan now is to stagger the hospital building process and allow the economy time to catch up. “The property has water but no sewer. Homes and businesses haven’t come as quickly as everyone thought they would, so no sewer yet. The state has agreed to put off our Certificate of Need for our 150,000 square foot facility. It would be a tragedy to build it now.”
Instead, the hospital is proposing to start work on the roads and other infrastructure for a while, putting in turning lanes and other items until at least the end of 2012. It would be 18 months to two years before a medical office building is considered.
“If there is a positive shift in the economy,” Bibeau said. “They will ramp up the project.”
In the meantime, he reminded the group, services are available in Matthews. Four hundred parking spaces will be added to the Matthews complex by mid to late September. A fifth floor will be added by the first quarter of 2012 with 44 more beds available.
“There is healthcare in the community. Charlotte is the most competitive market in the nation. We want to deliver service but we have to ask ourselves, is it the right time?”
In 1985, Presbyterian Hospital was approached to build a hospital in Mint Hill for the first time. The hospital said the community wasn’t ready.
In December 2006, Presbyterian announced that the town was finally ready and they would build a $90 million hospital at the fork of Hwy. 24/27 and Interstate 485. This would be a 50-bed, state of the art facility which was supposed to break ground in a few months. Presbyterian officials went from town to town throughout the area, Cabarrus and Stanly Counties as well, to receive their blessings and resolutions for the Certificate of Need required by the state for the new hospital.
In February 2009, Presbyterian delayed work on the hospital until late 2010 after a stunning $174 million loss by their parent company, Novant Health in late 2008. There were plans to redesign the hospital with a view to making it more cost and space conscious.
In other business matters
• The Kiwanis golf tournament will be held on September 19 at the Ballantyne Country Club. There will be prizes and food.
• New members for August were Inspire Fitness and Personal Training and Union Oral Surgery and Dental Implant Center.
• Bob Lucas of Allstate spoke about teenage driving and texting.
• The Kiwanis Club will host an After Hours event Thursday, September 1 from 5-7 pm. It will be held at 8325 B Fairview Road. Ron Freeman Insurance, Manchester Automotive, Create A Video and Monogram Magic will also be sponsors.
• RHA Howell’s will hold a benefit ride on September 10 which will be $25 to enter.
• The Mint Hill Lion’s Club said this is its 14th year for their 5K race during the Mint Hill Madness event.
• The Levine Senior Center will hold a golf tournament on October 3.