Orlando Health, a $3.4 billion network of hospitals, physician practices and outpatient care centers, has purchased more land for its $42 million medical complex now under construction on Rinehart Road in Lake Mary.
The healthcare company paid $3.1 million for an 8.36-acre parcel, according to a deed signed Tuesday and recorded Thursday in Seminole County. The land will be added to the 30.8 acres at Rinehart Road and Manderley Run where the non-profit company is now building a free-standing emergency department and a medical office pavilion.
The seller was LMLD New Century I LLC, a company headed by Rich Toomey and James Gray, that owns vacant land facing Interstate 4 and adjoining the medical complex.
The medical complex is part of Lake Mary Wellness & Technology Park, formerly the New Century Development, being developed by Parkway Properties Investments LLC. Toomey is director of land development for Parkway.
Orlando Health will use the additional land for "ambulatory (outpatient) care," said company spokesman Desmond Jordon in an e-mail.
In addition to the emergency department and the office pavilion, the healthcare company plans to build a six-story, 240-bed hospital in the complex. The state Agency for Health Care Administration recently granted Orlando Health the obligatory Certificate of Need for the planned hospital.
"Subject to specific site approvals, we envision a future medical pavilion on the property that will support our Lake Mary hospital and complement our other medical facilities in the area," said Matt Taylor, vice president for asset strategy at Orlando Health, in printed statement.
Lake Mary officials gave the necessary approvals for the overall project on Nov. 1. The first phase of construction, a two-story, 44,000-square-foot emergency department and a three-story, 60,000-square-foot medical office pavilion, is underway and should be completed by September, Jordon said. He could not give a timeline for construction of the hospital or the ambulatory care center.
The new free-standing ED with 24 beds, an imaging department, ambulance bays and a helipad will coordinate with Orlando Health's South Seminole Hospital, six miles away.
Two other hospital chains, Central Florida Regional Hospital, an affiliate of HCA North Florida, and AdventHealth (formerly Florida Hospital) have opened free-standing emergency departments in the Lake Mary area in recent years. The relatively affluent area has a "good payer mix," said Anne Spencer, director of office and healthcare brokerage at Cushman & Wakefield.
"A good payer mix means a high number of people who have private insurance," Spencer said. "It's not a Medicaid or Medicare area. If you're young and you're working, you usually have private insurance, and they usually reimburse at the highest rates."
Spencer said there is a need for medical office space in the Lake Mary area. Not since before the Great Recession have builders been willing to build medical office buildings on spec. Land is too expensive and it's tough to get financing unless you have 50 percent or more of the office space pre-leased.
The new Orlando Health medical office pavilion will address some of the need for office space, but not much. That's because the only doctors who will be able to lease space in the new building are those employed by Orlando Health or who are on staff -- meaning those with visiting privileges.
"It will not solve the deficit," said Spencer, who represents a doctor looking for office space to lease in the area. "It will help a little, but it will only help the Orlando Health people. It will help the community. The people in Lake Mary will have more options."