$3.8B UC Davis hospital gets green light despite concerns

Expansion plans for Sacramento, Calif.-based UC Davis Medical Center have been approved by a committee of the University of California Board of Regents after the university agreed to include support for underserved populations in the community, Sacramento Business Journal reported Jan. 30. 

The committee was originally set to approve the plans for the $3.8 billion project Jan. 19 but postponed it until Jan. 20 when concerns were brought up that it did not have enough community outreach, according to the report.

"I hear broad-based talk about equity. Reading the document, I don't understand what you mean by it, what the metrics are, what we're approving, vis-a-vis that question," Regent John Pérez said, at the meeting, according to the Business Journal. "I hear, 'Hire locally, source locally, invest locally.' Sounds good. What does it mean?"

The city of Sacramento agreed to provide $50 million for affordable housing in the community, and UC Davis agreed to fill 20 percent of new jobs at the campus with nearby residents. This allowed the plan to pass.

"I do want to make it clear that our commitment to the community is among our highest priorities, and I think that community benefits package that we negotiated with the community representatives, the city and our private partner demonstrates that commitment," UC Davis Chancellor Gary May said at the meeting, according to the Business Journal.

The plans include a 16-story hospital building and a five-story pavilion, which would replace current patient care facilities.

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