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St. Cloud's Medical Arts Campus and incentives attract new office buildings

St. Cloud's Medical Arts Campus and incentives attract new office buildings
Community Health Systems, parent company of St. Cloud Regional Medical Center, has filed construction plans for a 49,700-square-foot medical office building (A) on U.S. 192. A local developer is also wrapping up permitting for an 11,400-square-foot medical office (B) just east of the hospital. (Orange County Property Appraiser/staff edit)

St. Cloud's rapid population growth and the local hospital's recent expansion have drawn a trio of new medical office developments to the city and its 240-acre Medical Arts Campus.

Karl Theobald, a general contractor who also serves on the city's Economic Development Advisory Council, is prepping an 11,400-square foot Class A Medical Office Building on 2801 17th St., just east of St. Cloud Regional Medical Center.

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"We've been working on it for about a year," he said. "It's going to be a 2-story building, and a total investment of about $2.5 million."

Theobald said he assisted the previous owner, who had acquired the land in 2010 through a foreclosure sale, with rezoning the 1-acre site for medical offices. "He hadn't done anything with it, so I cold-called him and offered to buy it," he told GrowthSpotter.

Kissimmee architect Stanley Forrest designed the building, and Theobald said he's already pre-sold the second floor. He is finalizing the permits and expects an eight-month construction period.

The City Council is scheduled to vote Thursday on an ordinance outlining new economic incentives that could be available to the businesses that locate in the Medical Arts Campus.

Economic Development Manager David Rodriguez said the city will offer up to $3,000 in job tax credits to qualified target industries (QTIs) within the district. The grants would be disbursed over a three year period to businesses that create up to 10 high-paying jobs.

"The job creation grant is designed to create parity with Kissimmee and Orlando and with the Florida QTI regulations," he said.

The end user would receive the grant -- not the developer. The city also offers fast-track permitting for new medical office buildings larger than 5,000 square feet.

Meanwhile, the hospital's parent company, Community Health Systems, has also filed plans with the city for a 49,700-square-foot medical office building at the intersection of U.S. 192 and Budinger Avenue, just northeast of the hospital.

While the hospital's spokesman declined to comment on the project. The 2-story building is being designed by Catalyst Healthcare Real Estate and engineered by S&ME, according to the construction documents.

Rodriguez also confirmed plans for a third medical practice -- DNF Medical Centers -- to build its second St. Cloud location on E192 at Old Hickory Tree Road, outside of the Medical Arts Campus. He said the 3-story building would be comparable to DNF's recently completed Orlando office. The practice also has a location in Kissimmee.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at lkinsler@GrowthSpotter.com or (407) 420-6261, or tweet me at @LKinslerOGrowth. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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