(WBRZ News 2) The so-called “Health District” city and medical officials have been pushing for an area along I-10 will get a new tenant.
Ochsner revealed plans for a $100 million doctor's office, “micro hospital” and surgical hospital between Bluebonnet and Siegen Lane in an area behind the Mall of Louisiana. The complex will be on about 25 acres and part of the High Grove development – an upscale, mixed-use housing and business community that overlooks the mall and the interstate at the Mall of Louisiana exit on I-10.
The facility will open in 2019, officials said at a news conference Thursday morning.
The Health District is the idea of a number of hospital executives and the Baton Rouge Area Foundation to turn the area from Essen Lane to the Mall of Louisiana into an epicenter of medical research. Already, there are seven hospitals and specialized treatment centers and countless doctors' offices and other practices in the area. The hope is to expand and encourage development in the area.
But, the idea's not been without controversy. In February 2016, some members of the EBR Metro Council supported the NAACP in its opposition to the plans, arguing it was poor timing to develop the southern end of the parish as a medical mecca when areas in North Baton Rouge were without adequate medical care.
Ochsner also announced the opening of its cancer center at the current O'Neal campus. The cancer center should open this year.